Ebola e oltre

WASHINGTON, DC – Gli Stati Uniti e l’Europa hanno reagito in modo gravemente spropositato di fronte ad alcuni casi isolati di ebola all’interno delle loro frontiere. Queste risposte date in preda al panico non sono solo futili, ma oltretutto, violando i principi scientifici di base, sfidano i criteri etici fondamentali legati all’azione obbligatoria della sanità pubblica. E in relazione allo scopo di difendere i cittadini dal virus dell’ebola, o addirittura di prevenire simili emergenze sanitarie a livello globale in futuro, queste risposte potrebbero persino risultare controproducenti.

Gli esempi più eclatanti di reazione spropositata si sono verificati negli Stati Uniti dove la risposta iniziale ha previsto uno screening dei viaggiatori provenienti dalla Guinea, dalla Liberia e dalla Sierra Leone. Inoltre, aspetto ancor più problematico, diversi stati hanno istituito dei periodi di quarantena di 21 giorni per gli operatori sanitari di rientro negli Stati Uniti dai paesi colpiti dall’ebola. Per fortuna, le ripercussioni a livello politico legate alla quarantena hanno subito obbligato alcuni amministratori locali ad allentare le restrizioni.

E’ tempo che i paesi sviluppati riconoscano che il modo migliore per proteggere i loro cittadini dall’ebola è aiutare a fermare la diffusione del virus nell’Africa occidentale. Ciò richiede innanzitutto un sostegno ad una maggiore capacità di contrasto dell’ebola nei tre paesi più affetti dal virus. Questa risposta deve essere supportata da finanziamenti adeguati (e consistenti), da dottori, infermieri e operatori sociali con un’ottima formazione e da un miglioramento della capacità locale di diagnosi, del trattamento, delle procedure di ricerca dei contatti avvenuti e di isolamento degli individui infettati.

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