Perspectives

Planning for the Next Epidemic

Authors: Neil J. Nusbaum, JD, MD

Abstract

Recent American public health concerns have included two emerging viral infection threats, zika and Ebola, and the recrudescence of the measles virus. Zika confirms the opinion that even when a disease vector, such as a mosquito, for a viral disease is well defined, it may be difficult to eliminate that vector from the human environment. In turn, Ebola exposed the striking gaps in preparedness of the American healthcare infrastructure for the management of even a handful of cases of real or suspected infection of an agent for which patients commonly became much more highly infectious as the illness progressed.

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