It would be hard to escape the current media excitement over the Ebola infection. Make no mistake, it is truly a serious infectious agent. Recently a few, very basic management errors contributed to the excitement. However, it is still an infectious agent that a great deal of information is already known about. It should and will be contained. Another mysterious infectious disease, from Africa, comes to mind and many in my age bracket will remember it. When HIV first arrived on the scene in the early 80’s, it was very scary. It was also a virus and nothing at all was known about it. It was contagious and it was 100% fatal.
People watched in horror as Rock Hudson wasted away. ER personnel were very aware and very afraid, but all of the patients got treated anyway. It took several years simply to discover the infecting agent and several more for any real treatment options. Now, it is just another chronic, manageable illness.
Later came the “Anthrax” scare, then SARS, but with time and common sense, these too were managed. My advice–don’t panic, and take sensible consistent precautions.