The Ebola outbreak was in the headlines in 2014 and it is in the news as we begin 2015. No virus strikes as much fear and thus, lack of compassion for individuals infected with Ebola. A nurse in the UK is in critical condition infected with the Ebola virus http://alturl.com/euj2t An American Health worker exposed to Ebola is headed to Nebraska for observation. “The World Health Organization (WHO) reports more than 20,000 confirmed or suspected cases of Ebola, mostly in the countries of Guinea, Liberia, and Sierra Leone, as of Dec. 27 (Dec. 24 for Liberia). More than 7,800 people have died in the largest Ebola outbreak ever recorded”. Unfortunately, we will probably read about many more cases throughout 2015. However, scientists are currently working to develop a vaccine. http://alturl.com/dfb3v
The CDC declares Influenza an epidemic because of the high incident of the flu in various regions of the US. That being the case, the flu high incident rate was in the news in 2014 and continues to be discussed in January of 2015 http://abcnews.go.com/Health/15-children-dead-cdc-declares-flu-epidemic/story?id=27895739 The flu has not yet peaked thus, the reason for the concern, as well as, the deaths that have occurred to date.
The Norovirus outbreaks on cruise ships was in the news in 2014. There were so many cases in 2014 that I thought twice about cruising. http://alturl.com/3rs3g However, did you know that the” Norovirus is second to the common cold in reported illnesses, impacting millions of people around the world each year. Norovirus, previously known as Norwalk Virus, was actually named for a land-based outbreak in Norwalk, Ohio, that originally occurred some 30 years ago. It can break out at any time of the year.” We will probably see this virus in the news in 2015. The CDC implemented a Vessel Sanitation Program http://alturl.com/vbtzp ; notification is required when the GI illness count exceeds 2% of the total number of passengers or crew onboard.
Enterovirus has been attributed to at least 3 deaths in 2014; these deaths were in children; the infection most often occurs in the summer fall and is most prevalent in children. Enterovirus enters the body through the gastrointestinal tract and thrives there, often moving on to attack the nervous system. “Enteroviruses can be found in the respiratory secretions (for example, saliva, sputum, or nasal mucus) and stool of an infected person. Other people may become infected by direct contact with secretions from an infected person or by contact with contaminated surfaces or objects, such as a drinking glass or telephone. Parents, teachers, and child-care-center workers may also become infected by contamination of the hands with stool from an infected infant or toddler during diaper changes”.
In 2014 there was an outbreak of Mumps in Columbus, Ohio. Columbus reported over 250 cases which is quite an increase from previous years. The outbreak started on the campus of Ohio State University, outbreaks are infrequent, it is unlikely that Mumps will be in the news in 2015. Mumps is a vaccine preventable illness.