Fielding Graduate University News

Notes from Liberia: Fielding talks about Ebola

Posted by Hilary Edwards on Tue, Nov 11, 2014

Ebola: What You Need To Know and How You Can Help

Many at Fielding Graduate University have expressed compassion and concern about those suffering with Ebola and for people in the affected countries. In an effort to keep the community informed and healthy, Fielding faculty member in the School of Human & Organizational Development, David Willis, PhD, along with doctoral student and his mentee, Ammu Shittu, recently organized a webinar open to the university. This webinar was recorded and is available by clicking here: https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/79672210/FGU%20Ebola%20Information%20Webinar%2010-25-14%2C%208.59%20AM.mov

ebola quaratine workersConversations between Willis and Shittu over the past several months prompted the two to take action by reaching out to the Fielding community to connect them to the current Ebola crisis. Shittu is currently in the proposal stage of this dissertation research on Ebola, which is fitting considering his knowledge and background: he is a UN worker and served on front line zones of decelerating conflict recently in Kosovo, Afghanistan and currently in East Timor, Liberia. Willis stated, "So far the county Aminu is working in, Grand Gedeh County, is Ebola-free, but they are all taking extreme precautions. What is most worrying is the collapse of the economy...The lockdown on the capital has had many repercussions."

In this first session in a series of webinars for the Fielding community about the Ebola crisis, main topics included the local situation in Liberia, West Africa, perceptions of Ebola including fears and realities, lessons learned and what is needed, followed by questions and answers from the audience.

Further discussion was led by guest speakers Elsie Karmbo, County Health Officer, Zwedru, Grand Gedeh County, Liberia, Emmanuel Bryma Momoh, Human Rights Officer, UN Field Office, Zwedru, Grand Gedeh County, Liberia, and Fielding faculty member Marie Farrell, PhD, Fielding Graduate University.

To listen to the webinar: click here: https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/79672210/FGU%20Ebola%20Information%20Webinar%2010-25-14%2C%208.59%20AM.mov


In a message to the Fielding community from President Katrina Rogers and the Fielding Human Resources Office, following information was provided:

Both the President’s office and human resources have received inquiries about Ebola in the last several days. Many of you have expressed compassion and concern about those suffering with Ebola and for people in the affected countries. Our hearts are with them under what must be very difficult circumstances. We would like to give you some additional information given the extensive media coverage of the Ebola outbreak:

  • The U.S. Centers for Disease Control (CDC) urges all U.S. residents to avoid nonessential travel to Liberia, Guinea, and Sierra Leone. The CDC is not currently recommending that travelers avoid visiting other African countries. According to the CDC, Ebola is a very low risk for most travelers, who can protect themselves by avoiding sick people and hospitals in West Africa where patients with Ebola are being treated.
  • Ebola is a viral disease that is spread through direct contact with the blood or other bodily fluids — such as urine, saliva, sweat, or vomit — of an infected person who is showing symptoms of the disease, or from contact with objects like needles that have been contaminated with the virus.
  • Symptoms of Ebola include fever (higher than 101.5°F), severe headache, muscle pain, weakness, diarrhea, vomiting, abdominal pain, and bleeding or bruising.
  • In the U.S., those people at the greatest risk of infection from exposure in the workplace are health care workers. For all other American workplaces, travelers returning from one of the affected countries are at greatest risk.
  • The affected countries have been asked to conduct exit medical screenings of all persons at international airports, seaports and major land crossings for illness consistent with potential Ebola infection. Effective October 22, travelers from the three affected West African countries will be permitted to enter the U.S. through only five U.S. airports (Atlanta, Chicago-O’Hare, Newark Liberty, New York JFK, and Washington-Dulles), where incoming passengers from the affected region undergo medical screening.
  •  The symptoms of Ebola are, of course, similar to those of many other illnesses, so as flu season approaches, we’d like to take this opportunity to urge all of you to consider getting a flu shot, and to stay home if you do become ill. If you report to work sick, your supervisor may send you home to rest and recover. Frequent hand-washing and other basic hygiene practices are useful techniques to minimize the threat of transmitting infections.
If you have additional concerns or questions about Ebola, the following websites are available:

FAQ – Ebola, About the Disease - http://www.msf.org/article/faq-ebola-about-disease

CDC – Centers for Disease Control - http://www.cdc.gov/vhf/ebola/index.html

WHO – Global Alert and Response - http://www.who.int/csr/disease/ebola/en/

Liberia: Working with Communities Is the Key to Stopping Ebola  http://www.who.int/features/2014/liberia-stopping-ebola/en/

Stopping Ebola with Public Health Expertise, not Casual Advice http://www.huffingtonpost.com/linda-p-fried/stopping-ebola-with-publi_b_5989626.html

Major Aid Organizations

http://www.msf.org/search?keyword=ebola

http://www.directrelief.org/emergency/2014-west-africa-ebola-outbreak/

http://www.savethechildren.org/site/c.8rKLIXMGIpI4E/b.6115947/k.8D6E/Official_Site.htm

 

 


Tags: Organizational development, fielding graduate university, human development