KRWG

Health

Please note:  Sometimes, NPR publishes headlines before the story and/or audio is ready; check back for content later if this occurs.  We also publish national/world news on our home page.

Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

There are so many questions about the way this country's few Ebola cases have been handled and that's even after a Congressional hearing today. We'll go to Capitol Hill in a moment, but first some of the latest developments related to those current cases.

What's for dinner on World Food Day?

How about a humble meal of dried termites stirred into a sukuma wiki stew? With a side of sorghum couscous?

World Food Day was invented by the United Nations in 1979 and first celebrated the next year. One goal is to promote underutilized, highly nutritious foods for the 800 million people in lower-income countries who can't easily prepare balanced meals.

How can health workers stay safe while treating an Ebola patient?

The CDC is embroiled in a controversy over that very question. After the infection of two nurses at a Dallas hospital, the agency is facing criticism about whether initial guidelines provided to U.S. facilities were stringent enough.

Updated at 7:53 p.m. ET

Nina Pham, the 26-year-old nurse who became infected with Ebola after treating a patient with the disease at a Dallas hospital, will be transferred to a high-level containment facility at the National Institutes of Health in Bethesda, Md.

Dr. Anthony Fauci, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, said in testimony before a House committee that Pham will be admitted to the NIH tonight.

Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

This almost never happens; President Obama has canceled travel plans. He famously holds to his schedule while managing urgent news, but he will stay in Washington, we're told, to oversee the response to Ebola.

RACHEL MARTIN, HOST:

First there was ISIS. Now there's Ebola.

The Ebola health crisis is the latest global issue to become a fixture this campaign season, spilling into debates, campaign rhetoric — and even a few ads.

Political arguments about Ebola can roughly be divided into three groups.

Democrats argue that budget-cutting Republicans have deprived the government of the resources it needs to keep Americans safe from the threat of Ebola. That's the argument Democratic Sen. Mark Udall of Colorado made at a recent debate.

How A No-Touch Thermometer Detects A Fever

Oct 15, 2014

In the battle to stop Ebola's spread, health officials worldwide have been deploying thermometers in hopes of detecting the earliest symptoms among people who might be sick. The no-contact thermometer, already broadly used in some airports in Africa, has come to U.S. airports this week — now at New York's John F. Kennedy Airport, and, starting Thursday, at D.C.'s Dulles, Chicago's O'Hare, Atlanta's Hartsfield-Jackson, and Newark's Liberty.

Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

Ten days ago, Ashoka Mukpo, an NBC freelance cameraman who caught Ebola in West Africa, arrived in Omaha, Neb., for treatment.

Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

We have some news and an advisory. The news is this, the Texas Department of Health says a second health care worker tested positive for Ebola. The advisory is what we don't know. Dr. Daniel Varga is with Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital.

Jack Scoville was buying himself a chocolate bar a few weeks ago — Hershey's, milk — at a corner store in Chicago. And he noticed the price was just a bit higher than he's used to paying: 5 or 10 cents more. His first thought was not to blame a greedy store owner or the executives in Hershey, Pa.

He blamed Ebola.

As soon as the Ebola outbreak started to spiral out of control in West Africa, Kwan Kew Lai felt obligated to help.

She's a physician who specializes in infectious disease. And for the last decade, she's dedicated herself to volunteering for international health emergencies. She works part-time at one of Harvard's teaching hospital just to have that flexibility.

NPR producer Rebecca Hersher has reported on Ebola from Liberia for the past two weeks. She just returned to the U.S. via Brussels and into Washington Dulles International Airport — the same route flown by Thomas Eric Duncan, the Liberian national who went on to Dallas, where he was diagnosed with the virus and later died. As Hersher's tweets reveal, she was screened. Sort of.

John F. Kennedy Memorial Hospital is the largest public hospital in Liberia. It has a trauma unit, a maternity ward and an outpatient clinic that serves hundreds a day.

But there's one illness that the facility won't treat: Ebola. JFK is not equipped to treat or contain it if it gets inside their wards. A new triage unit in the driveway detects patients with the virus and sends them to a dedicated Ebola center.

In the parts of the world that we cover in our blog, many people live in villages.

Villages have their problems, to be sure. There may not be a doctor or clinic nearby. Girls may not be able to go to school. Clean water might be a long walk away.

But a new book points out that village life has its advantages.

It's hard to imagine it now, when the death toll from Ebola is in the thousands. But just a few months ago, you could count the victims one at a time.

For Dr. Joshua Mugele, the counting began one morning in June when he showed up for work at the John F. Kennedy Memorial Hospital in Monrovia, Liberia. Mugele, an ER doc and associate professor of clinical emergency medicine at Indiana University School of Medicine, was on a fellowship, working with staff to develop disaster readiness programs. The project had nothing to do with Ebola.

Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

One of the biggest roadblocks in West Africa to containing the Ebola outbreak is the lack of isolation wards for people who are infected.

President Obama has announced plans to build 17 new Ebola Treatment Units in Liberia. Those new medical facilities will require thousands of additional workers who are trained and willing to work in them.

Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

ARUN RATH, HOST:

In West Africa, one of the simplest ways to slow the Ebola outbreak is to educate people about how to keep from getting infected with the virus. Now, there are some signs that Ebola awareness is indeed driving down the number of cases in parts of Liberia — and Liberian musicians and DJs may deserve some of the credit.

Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

ARUN RATH, HOST:

Sometimes you can tell a lot about a country just by walking its beaches. That's what I did on my last day in Freetown, the capital of Sierra Leone, where I was on assignment covering the Ebola epidemic.

Standing at water's edge, facing the sea. The smooth blue rollers come splashing in, steady, hypnotic — like oceans anywhere in the world.

NPR global health correspondent Jason Beaubien is on his third trip to cover Ebola in West Africa — to Sierra Leone in July, and to Liberia in August and now this month. He sees big changes. Yet some things remain the same.

What's your impression this time around?

Monrovia, Liberia's capital, is a city that relies on public transportation — buses, private vans (also known locally as buses), cars and motorcycle taxis. And you can't use any of these options without coming into contact with other people, whether you're jostling in line or wrapping your arms around a motorcycle taxi driver.

Since the Ebola outbreak, Monrovia has placed new restrictions on public transport, and fewer drivers are willing to take chances. So there aren't as many options for commuters at a time when Ebola has made everyone afraid of touching strangers.

A health care worker in Texas who cared for Ebola patient Thomas Eric Duncan has been confirmed to have the virus, according to the Centers for Disease Control. The head of the CDC says the infection stems from a breach in protocol that officials are working to identify.

Investors Flock To Ebola-Related Companies

Oct 11, 2014

Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

ARUN RATH, HOST:

Today is the International Day of the Girl Child. It is a U.N. event with a grand name and a powerful mission. Girls around the world, especially in lower-income countries, often face terrible things, from genital mutilation to child marriage to kidnapping. We asked five photographers, who devote much or all of their time to documenting the lives of global girls, to share photos with special significance and talk about the images.

Pages