Viewpoint: filovirus haemorrhagic fever outbreaks: much ado about nothing?
Muyembe-Tamfum, J J
Van der Stuyft, P
van der Groen, G
AffiliationInstitute of Tropical Medicine, Antwerp, Belgium. firstname.lastname@example.org
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AbstractThe recent outbreak of Marburg haemorrhagic fever in the Democratic Republic of Congo has put the filovirus threat back on the international health agenda. This paper gives an overview of Marburg and Ebola outbreaks so far observed and puts them in a public health perspective. Damage on the local level has been devastating at times, but was marginal on the international level despite the considerable media attention these outbreaks received. The potential hazard of outbreaks, however, after export of filovirus from its natural environment into metropolitan areas, is argued to be considerable. Some avenues for future research and intervention are explored. Beyond the obvious need to find the reservoir and study the natural history, public health strategies for a more timely and efficient response are urgently needed.
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