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Unintended Consequences of the ‘Bushmeat Ban’ in West Africa during the 2013-2016 Ebola Virus Disease Epidemic
Following the 2013-2016 outbreak of Ebola virus disease (EVD) in West Africa, governments across the region imposed a ban on the hunting and consumption of meat from wild animals. This injunction was accompanied by public health messages emphasising the infectious…
Understanding Social Resistance to the Ebola Response in the Forest Region of the Republic of Guinea: An Anthropological Perspective
Why did Ebola response initiatives in the Upper Guinea Forest Region regularly encounter resistance, occasionally violent? Extending existing explanations concerning local and humanitarian “culture” and “structural violence,” and drawing on previous anthropological fieldwork and historical and documentary research, this article…
In countries with high levels of poverty or instability and with poor health system management and governance, people are highly vulnerable to shocks associated with ill health, including major epidemics. An effective health system can help build their resilience by…
Social Mobilization and Community Engagement Central to the Ebola Response in West Africa: Lessons for Future Public Health Emergencies.
Following the World Health Organization (WHO) declaration of a Public Health Emergency of International Concern regarding the Ebola outbreak in West Africa in July 2014, UNICEF was asked to co-lead, in coordination with WHO and the ministries of health of…
Emerging Viral Haemorrhagic Fevers (VHFs) offer a frontier for a “One-Health” research agenda; the joined-up, or collaborative, effort of multiple disciplines to attain optimal health for people, animals, and the environment (e.g. http://www.onehealthinitiative.com/). Multidisciplinary work on Lassa Fever and Ebola…
The recent Ebola epidemic in West Africa highlights how engaging with the sociocultural dimensions of epidemics is critical to mounting an effective outbreak response. Community engagement was pivotal to ending the epidemic and will be to post-Ebola recovery, health system…
As the Ebola crisis continues to unfold across West Africa and the international community belatedly responds, broader questions arise beyond the immediate challenges on the ground. These fundamentally challenge our understanding of ‘development’ as framed and practised in past decades.…
Comparison of Social Resistance to Ebola Response in Sierra Leone and Guinea Suggests Explanations Lie in Political Configurations not Culture
Instead of looking to 'culture' to explain patterns of social resistance (as was common in the media and in the discourse of responding public health authorities) a comparison between Sierra Leone and Guinea suggests that explanations lie in divergent political…
This paper seeks to understand the fear many Guineans feel towards Ebola response initiatives and why the educators, doctors and burial teams have sometimes encountered resistance, occasionally violent.
Practitioners of traditional medicine – the first port of call for 80% of Guineans – could be invaluable in helping fight other killer diseases, such as malaria.
Shunned by their communities and unable to work, female survivors of Ebola in Guinea face profound hardship as they try to care for their families.
Marie Claire Therese Fwelo Mwanza, a social mobilization expert with 27 years experience at WHO, helped end 5 of the Democratic Republic of Congo’s (DRC) 7 Ebola outbreaks through effective community engagement. In 2014, Marie Claire played a role in…