17 – 23 January 2015

Ebola media coverage

Peter Piot speaks to BBC News from the World Economic Forum (WEF) at Davos about the vulnerability of the western world to epidemics: “Our world is getting more vulnerable to big epidemics, because of population expansion, huge mobility and more intense contact between animals and people. My concern is that when [the Ebola outbreak] is over we will just forget about it. We need to be better prepared and we need to invest in vaccines and treatment. It’s like a fire brigade – you don’t start to set up a fire brigade when some house is on fire.” Peter is also interviewed by Thomson Reuters for Davos Today, and by Swiss national radio.

A number of news outlets including City AM, Washington Post and International Business Times report on comments Peter Piot makes to delegates at the WEF about the risk of epidemics.

Peter Piot is interviewed in Davos for CNN’s Connect the World about the Ebola outbreak: “I think the end game is going to start now. But that doesn’t mean that it will be easy, because this epidemic will only be over when the last person with Ebola has either died or has recovered without having infected anybody. So, that will require enormous effort in terms of surveillance, of contact tracing, finding out from village to village, from district to district, whether there are any cases left.”

John Edmunds and David Heymann speak to The Lancet about the status of the Ebola outbreak and the vaccine trials taking place. John Edmunds: “Sierra Leone seems to have reached its peak, but it’s coming down from a very high level. I’d expect a long tail as the epidemic bumps around. Guinea has been fairly stable since August with no sign of numbers coming down.”

David Heymann:I hope the outbreak is stopped before we even need these vaccines. Control measures that have worked in the past seem to be working now, certainly in Liberia and Sierra Leone—rapid identification and isolation of patients, contact tracing and surveillance, and community empowerment and understanding. It would be wonderful to have a vaccine to protect health workers and to protect patient contacts, but we mustn’t forget the importance of these three steps while people are still dying.”

Peter Piot is quoted in the Financial Times commenting on Ebola vaccine trial funding announced by the Innovative Medicines Initiative. The School will be coordinating clinical trials of a J&J vaccine candidate for the Ebola virus: “This is an opportunity to make sure that this is the last Ebola epidemic in which our only tools to control it are isolation and quarantine.” The School’s role in the vaccine trials is covered by a number of specialist science, business and industry publications including Wall Street Journal, Reuters, Bloomberg Business Week, International Business Times, Healthcare Asia, CNBC, The Economic Times, Pharmaceutical Business Review, Pharma Times, Daily Science Journal, El Economista,

Karl Blanchet speaks to Goal.com about concerns that Equatorial Guinea is at risk from Ebola as it is chosen as a last minute venue to host the African Cup of Nations: “While Equatorial Guinea has not been directly affected yet, it is more prone because of its location, and will become more at risk during an event which will see fans, players and officials travel from affected areas. If cases arise, is Equatorial Guinea capable of managing the disease?”

Other media coverage:

Daily Mail reports on a visit by HRH The Countess of Wessex to the School to meet staff and students working on eye health projects as part of The Queen Elizabeth Jubilee Trust’s avoidable blindness programme. The Countess was marking her 50th birthday, and was accompanied by the Earl of Wessex. As part of the visit she tried out Peek, the portable eye examination kit, and blew out the candles on a special birthday cake. Also covered by almost 70 other outlets including Huffington Post pictures of the day, Hello! magazine (preview and report), Hello! Canada, Telegraph, Express, Yahoo News, Woman’s Day, Royal Central and regional papers such as Yorkshire Evening Post.

Londonist visit the School for a tour of the building, including a look around the insectaries which are home to the mosquito colonies.

Martin McKee is quoted in the Guardian on his research indicating that the government’s imposition of sanctions on Jobseeker’s Allowance claimants has led to a significant rise in people leaving unemployment benefits, but that they are not returning to work: “There is a need for a cost-benefit analysis of sanctioning, looking at it not just in narrow terms of unemployment benefit, but also the bigger picture, focusing on employment, health, and other social costs. The coalition government has embarked upon an unprecedented experiment to reform social security. I hope policymakers will be informed by these findings and see the value of investigating the consequences.” The story appears on the front page of the Guardian’s print edition, and is also covered in another Guardian article, and over 200 regional papers.

Helena Helmby speaks to CNN about pork tapeworms, which can infect humans and in some cases enter the nervous system, including the brain: “Food import and export is increasing and increasing risks of consuming infected goods.” The story also runs on numerous other news sites including Fox News, New York Post, Trinidad Guardian.

Chris Grundy appears on BBC 4 documentary, Maps: Power, Plunder and Possession (repeat – interviews at 21m40s and 25m19s) discussing John Snow’s cholera map.

David Leon is quoted in the Express, commenting on research from Harvard Medical School which suggests that one alcoholic drink a day could help stop heart disease: “While this study may be of interest to scientists studying how alcohol affects the heart, overall it is consistent with the emerging consensus that any level of drinking carries risks, and that the more you drink the higher the probability of dying prematurely from something. The findings of this study would be misunderstood if for health reasons they encouraged non-drinkers to take up drinking, or for occasional drinkers to drink more regularly.” Also covered by other publications including Daily Mail, The Scotsman

Mark Jit speaks to Scientific American about research into the cost-effectiveness of a two dose human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine schedule: “Our study shows that if this protection from two doses lasts at least 20 years, then the additional benefit of giving a third dose is likely to be very small. On the basis of this evidence, the UK has adopted a two-dose vaccine schedule as it is likely to provide good protection and make sense economically.”

Times Higher Education reports that the School has ranked second in the first UK University Global Health Research League Table. Anne Mills speaks to Science Magazine about the rankings, and the story is also covered on a number of news sites in China, including Taiyuan News.

Medical News Today reports on a new study co-authored by Oliver Cumming, which calls for a new global standard for improvements in household drinking water and sanitation access.

Pink News and Gay News Network report on the School research showing that bisexual women are more likely to experience mental illness than lesbians.

Lenka Benova speaks to Nature Middle East about her research into mother-to-child (vertical) transmission of Hepatitis C virus (HCV) in Egypt: “HCV vertical transmission is a rare occurrence. In our previous study, we estimated that between five and 10 in a hundred children born to women with active HCV infection are vertically infected, depending on the mother’s HIV co-infection.” HCV transmission research by Lenka is also covered in Healio Infectious Disease.

Helena Legido-Quigley’s 2008/2009 research into the experiences of British pensioners in the Spanish healthcare system is referenced in the Guardian.

Comments are closed.