Last night was a very important program, especially considering the increasing fear among American citizens about the possible spread of the Ebola virus. Many theories and rumors are posted on the internet - it’s hard to know what’s true and what isn’t. Glenn invited a panel of experts who answered your most pressing questions.
The whole show is available ON DEMAND, but you can watch a segment below:
Below are some of the questions from our live chat, answered by Dr. Murray Cohen:
Q: If there is an Ebola outbreak in my town, what is the best course of action for me and my family?
Dr. Cohen: Just stay away from crowds. Also a good time to go visit relatives in another town.
Q: I have the same question Glenn had that was never answered , about at what point do we need to avoid large crowds and keep children at home?
Dr. Cohen: Certainly not now; not yet. If God forbid we have lots of infected patients, our own outbreak, then it would be prudent to avoid anyplace where you or your kids could "get sllimed" if you know what I mean.
Q: There are places set up for quarantine in the US, why were/are they not being utilized to shut this down asap?
Dr. Cohen: We have these stations, and many other public health resources that have inexplicably not been utilized. We are suffering a total lack of leadership in our Ebola response.
Q: I read that ebola is carried by the fruit bats in Africia, then the people cook the bats, and eat them, then passed on to people. Is this fact or fiction?
Dr. Cohen: It's a fact that fruit bats are a common food source in Africa, and its a fact that they carry some diseases that can infect people (just like cows, chickens, pigs, etc, in our country.) It is debatable as to whether or not they are whats called the "environmental reservoir" for the Ebola virus.
Q: Can boosting your immune system help you from getting infected?
Dr. Cohen: Always! Not specific for Ebola, but rather to naturally fight off pathogen challenges that occur all day every day. This is the microbial world; WE are the invaders.
Q: Why are US Embassies still processing visas in west African countries? This seems counter intuitive in disease prevention.
Dr. Cohen: This is strictly a political matter. I personally think we are in global crisis that demands stronger prevention measures such as limiting travel such as you suggest.
Q: If dogs have antibodies why aren't we doing research on them for a vaccine?
Dr. Cohen: Although I dont' have specific first hand knowledge, I'm reasonable sure that mammalian blood cells including canine ARE being researched for both vaccine and therapeutic compounds and applications.
Q: Is an antiviral ear loop face mask futile or helpful?
Dr. Cohen: Not protective at all for you as the wearer, but can be very effective in preventing a sick person from spreading virus.
Q: Are Lysol wipes as good as Clorox.
Dr. Cohen: Against Ebola virus, certainly. Different pathogens are sensitive or resistant to different germicides. Everything kills Ebola on environmental surfaces; it is what we call "environmentally fragile."
Q: Israel claims to have treatment for Ebola/ Why is this not being discussed or pursued?
A: This is an FDA problem -- always for drugs from other countries. It's political and economic considerations taking charge here, not public health concerns.
Q: Can any warm blooded animal contract Ebola? I am talking about cats, dogs and the like.
A: Presumably yes, they can harbor the virus. However, there have never been any reports of Ebola virus being pathogenic in any mammals other than humans and non-human primates.
Below you can read the live chat the went alongside last night's special: