Time's Alexandra Sifferlin reports good Ebola news:
The World Health Organization declared Nigeria free of Ebola on Monday, a containment victory in an outbreak that has stymied other countries' response efforts....Sifferlin notes that Nigeria did a lot of things well, getting doctors trained early (by the World Health Organization and Doctors Without Borders) and declaring a health emergency immediately.
For the WHO to declare Nigeria as Ebola-free, the country had to make it 42 days with no new cases ..., verify that it actively sought out all possible contacts, and show negative test results for any suspected cases....
Nigeria had 20 cases of Ebola after a Liberian-American man named Patrick Sawyer flew into Lagos and collapsed at the airport. Health care workers treating Sawyer were infected, and as it spread it ultimately killed eight people, a low number next to the thousands of cases and deaths in other countries....
But Nigeria didn't seal its borders:
Keeping borders open. Nigeria has not closed its borders to travelers from Guinea, Sierra Leone and Liberia, saying the move would be counterproductive. "Closing borders tends to reinforce panic and the notion of helplessness," Shuaib said. "When you close the legal points of entry, then you potentially drive people to use illegal passages, thus compounding the problem." Shuaib said that if public health strategies are implemented, outbreaks can be controlled, and that closing borders would only stifle commercial activities in the countries whose economies are already struggling due to Ebola.Let me just remind you that Nigeria shares a continent with eleven other countries where Ebola has been detected:
We share a continent with no such countries. In fact, there are no such countries in the Western Hemisphere.
And yet the majority of Americans want the borders sealed. It wasn't done in Nigeria -- and it wasn't necessary.