India at Greater Risk of Ebola, than U.S. and Europe

This digitally-colorized scanning electron micrograph depicts numerous filamentous Ebola virus particles (blue) budding from a chronically-infected VERO E6 cell (yellow-green). (Image: NIAID)
This digitally-colorized scanning electron micrograph depicts numerous filamentous Ebola virus particles (blue) budding from a chronically-infected VERO E6 cell (yellow-green). (Image: NIAID)

While the Ebola alarm bells keep ringing in the U.S., one of the researcher’s who originally found the virus in 1976, has said his greatest worry is Ebola getting to India.

Speaking to The Observer, Professor Peter Piot said that he was most worried that some of the large number Indians working in west Africa would unwittingly take the virus to India.

“It would only take one of them to become infected, travel to India to visit relatives during the virus’s incubation period, and then, once he becomes sick, go to a public hospital there,” Prof. Piot said.

He said that medical staff in India don’t often wear protective gloves which would make them easy targets to become infected and to further spread the virus.

In comparison, Prof. Piot said that he thought that if the virus spread further in the U.S. and made its way to Europe it could be controlled.

Prof. Piot is Director of the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine.

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