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Ebola not a widespread threat to Americans

On Sept. 30, a man in Texas who had recently traveled to Liberia was diagnosed with the first documented case of Ebola in the United States, heightening previous worries about the disease that erupted after ebola-infected missionaries were flown home from West Africa this summer.

However, in a country with a well-established healthcare system and access to basic sanitary necessities, there is little need to worry that the appearance of the disease in America could become a widespread epidemic.

Unlike Liberia and other West African nations, the United States has measures in place to prevent the rapid spread of a disease like Ebola. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), for example, can identify and monitor people who came into contact with the Texan to ensure that the disease does not spread further than already infected individuals.

Additionally, the disease is not airborne; it can only be spread through direct contact with bodily fluids from infected individuals. Once a person is identified as having Ebola, it is easy for the CDC and doctors to contain the patient and, effectively, the disease. The disease can also be killed by cleaners and other sanitizers.

Ebola has become widespread in other nations because of a lack of similar, already-established response networks like the CDC and America’s vast hospital network, as well as limited access to sanitizing products. Without these resources, it is difficult for people to treat those infected in a sanitary way that will not infect caregivers and, in turn, those they interact with.

While the spread of Ebola is a true concern in other nations with less developed healthcare systems, the spread of the disease in America is something that should be of relatively little concern to citizens. This is especially true when one considers that the likelihood of being killed by food poisoning or partying too hard is greater than the likelihood of dying from Ebola in America, according to Newsweek. So don’t sweat Ebola, fellow Americans — at least for now.