The Anthropological Role in the Ebola Outbreak

As Ebola continues to spread through out the world anthropologists are often the only professionals willing to be part of the scene and put their fears behind them in order to talk to people living in the particular conditions. Being in the scene is a crucial resource in understanding the means of the virus and how people cope with the situation. Anthropologists focus more emphasis on the reasons behind the outbreak, how it started and how it’s spreading. In a place where the conditions seem to have been consistent for a long time, anthologists are curious as to why this outbreak started all of a sudden. Anthropologists are less concerned with urgently finding a way to control the outbreak and more concerned with spending time on research methodology. By looking at the ways behind viral transmission of the disease, anthropologists are hoping to understand why it is spreading so rapidly.

Anthropological research shows that the outbreak is mainly an issue of socio-economic status as the virus is spreading rapidly in areas with weak health infrastructures. Guinea, the country of origin, is considered one of the poorest countries in Africa. The citizens who live there do not have the resources or the money to obtain care or to take part in preventative measures to prevent the outbreak from even starting. The government is not stable enough to control the situation or provide measures to cease its spread. There is a deeper reason behind the virus that stems from the countries problems as a whole rooted in the infrastructure of the health system and lack of successful government.

References:

http://somatosphere.net/2014/09/notes-from-case-zero-anthropology-in-the-time-of-ebola.html

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