NEW HAVEN, Conn. (WTNH) – In a classroom located on the campus of Yale University, more than 100 students and faculty sat Thursday afternoon to hear a panel discussion on the Ebola virus. It was called “Beyond the Headlines; Understanding the Ebola Epidemic and Crisis Relief Initiatives” and featured three experts on Ebola.
The talk was opened up by moderator Elizabeth Bradley with Yale University, who first made it a point to say that the panelists would not be discussing Ebola concerns at the university specifically, rather would focus their time discussing the situation as it pertains to Africa.
The first panelist to speak was Kristina Talbert-Slagle, a Senior Scientific Officer at the Yale Global Health Leadership. According to Ms. Talbert-Slagle, what people need to understand about Ebola is that it is an illness transmitted through physical contact with bodily fluids.
“Until we can address the source of the outbreak we may see more cases,” said Ms. Talbert-Slagle.
The next expert to talk was Christopher Lockyear, who works as an Operations Manager with Doctors Without Boarders who focuses much of what he had to say about what the situation is like on ground in parts of Africa and the challenges associated with combating the disease.
“We’re in uncharted waters,” he mentioned at on point.
The last person to address the audience was Susana Edjang, Executive Officer of the Secretary General of the United Nations. Edjang estimated to combat Ebola another 600 or so medical personnel was needed. She also said that she thinks by the end of the year there could be as many as 20-thousand people infected with the illness. She suggested one way the international community could help fight Ebola is with “a regional system of response.”
Students we spoke with say they think the forum was an educational way to improve understanding of the disease on campus.