In a new ebook Ebola: Story of an Outbreak, Laurie Garrett, senior fellow for global health, offers a masterful account of the 1995 Ebola outbreak in Zaire, and shows how superstition and fear, compounded by a lack of resources, education, and clearheaded government planning have plagued our response to Ebola. In an extensive new introduction, Garrett forcefully argues that learning from past outbreaks is the key to solving the Ebola crisis of 2014.
First published in her bestselling book Betrayal of Trust, Garrett’s account of the 1995 Zaire outbreak takes readers through the epidemic’s course—beginning with the Kikwit villager who first contracted it from an animal encounter while chopping wood for charcoal deep in the forest. As she documents the outbreak in riveting detail, Garrett shows why our trust in world governments to protect people’s health has been irrevocably broken. She details the international community’s involvement in the epidemic’s aftermath: a pattern of response and abandonment, urgency that devolves into amnesia.
Ebola: Story of an Outbreak is essential reading for anyone who wants to understand Ebola, one of mankind’s most mysterious, malicious scourges. Garrett has issued a powerful call for governments, citizens, and the disease-fighting agencies of the wealthy world to take action.