Thursday, 5 February 2015

Lim Xin Yi (15)        05 - February - 2015 (term 1 week 5)


Article Headline " Blood from Ebola survivors could                               help spur new disease treatments "
Link to article on StraitsTimes :  http://www.straitstimes.com/news/world/more-world-stories/story/blood-ebola-survivors-could-help-spur-new-disease-treatments-201

In the article, the writer mentioned that in 2014, 4 Ebola patients were successfully treated. Currently, experts are testing if using blood from survivors of the Ebola virus is effective and useful in treating the infectious disease , under a government funded project.
From several past articles on Ebola,  I have read and observed that till now, at least hundreds of people have died due to the infection of Ebola. To the best of my knowledge , it is a fatal disease . Until now, no treatment has been medically and scientifically proven to be effective in curing the Ebola  infection.

The writer viewed traditional vaccines merely as boosters to the immune system's reactions to infections  , but not exactly a cure nor a treatment to the Ebola virus.
I agree that if a cure to Ebola is found, it would definitely be a huge milestone in terms of biomedical science. It would definitely be of great help to many people. Patients detected with Ebola would be able to recover once receiving the treatment, it would then reduce the number of fatalities caused by this disease, saving many people's  lives.  However, I have this concern that, people in poor countries may not be able to receive this treatment. Ebola spreads mostly over Africa countries which are mostly very poor. Hence, there is a possibility that even if a cure or treatment is found, people in these poor developing countries may not be introduced to this new kind of treatment. Even if it is available in their countries, the treatment fee may be high and people there, who are mostly poor, would not be able to afford it.  Hence, the suffering from Ebola will still continue.

Till this point in time, no Singaporean has been detected with Ebola.
I personally think that, if the Ebola virus were to origin from Singapore, it would not spread as fast as it did in African countries. This will be mainly due to the fact that many Singaporeans are very health - conscious and are aware of any fatal disease spreading at that point in time. Hence, people would go for injections for vaccines to increase the chance of not getting infected by Ebola. Furthermore, in Singapore, even if people are poor and cannot afford to have this vaccines injected, the government have policies and subsidies that are offered to the poor and needy. As a result , everyone will receive vaccines to help boost their immune's systems' reactions to Ebola . Therefore,  if Ebola were to start spreading from Singapore, I think that the impact in the world and the society would not be as big since most people will have the ability to fight against the virus.




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