Posts Tagged ‘Israel grossman’

Nigeria Joins Senegal In Gaining ‘Ebola-Free’ Status

Uncategorized | Posted by Israel Grossman Attorney
Oct 20 2014

Steve Inskeep talks to NPR’s Ofeibea Quist-Arcton about how Nigeria and Senegal were able to rid their countries of Ebola, despite the ongoing outbreak in West Africa.

Article source: http://www.npr.org/2014/10/20/357508947/nigeria-joins-senegal-in-gaining-ebola-free-status?utm_medium=RSS&utm_campaign=world

Ebola In Church: A Reverend’s Quarantine Spreads The Word

Uncategorized | Posted by Israel Grossman Attorney
Oct 20 2014

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Reverend Dr. Herman Browne voluntarily quarantined himself for 21 days after his wife’s friend tested positive for Ebola. On Sunday, he returned to his church, Trinity Cathedral, to preach to his congregation about Ebola prevention.

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Reverend Dr. Herman Browne voluntarily quarantined himself for 21 days after his wife's friend tested positive for Ebola. On Sunday, he returned to his church, Trinity Cathedral, to preach to his congregation about Ebola prevention.

Reverend Dr. Herman Browne voluntarily quarantined himself for 21 days after his wife’s friend tested positive for Ebola. On Sunday, he returned to his church, Trinity Cathedral, to preach to his congregation about Ebola prevention.

Jon Hamilton/NPR

Night clubs have shut their doors. Soccer leagues have been suspended. And a strict curfew is keeping the streets empty at night.

But there’s one place in Monrovia where people continue to gather despite the threat of Ebola: Sunday church service.

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Priests use tweezers to deliver the Holy Communion wafer at Trinity Cathedral in Monrovia to prevent the spread of Ebola.

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Priests use tweezers to deliver the Holy Communion wafer at Trinity Cathedral in Monrovia to prevent the spread of Ebola.

Priests use tweezers to deliver the Holy Communion wafer at Trinity Cathedral in Monrovia to prevent the spread of Ebola.

Michaeleen Doucleff/NPR

Since Ebola began in Liberia’s capital city, more people have started coming to Sunday service at Trinity Cathedral, says the very Reverend Dr. Herman Browne. And like many priests across Monrovia, Browne has been spreading the word about Ebola prevention through his sermons.

But Browne’s message this week was personal. It came from his family’s encounter with the virus.

For the past three Sundays, the reverend had been under a volunteer quarantine. This week he returned to the pulpit and explained to his congregation what happened.

It all began when his wife, Trokon Browne, went to see a close friend. “The friend … broke down, fell on the floor and started to cry,” Herman said. “Some illness had returned to her, and she was explaining it to Trokon.”

These were warning signs about Ebola. Trokon knew that. But her nurturing instincts kicked in. She embraced and fed her friend anyway.

“I said that was a crazy thing to do,” Herman said to his congregation, “because the lady was vomiting and had diarrhea.”

Two days later, the Brownes learned that the friend had Ebola.

One of the reasons Ebola continues to spread in Liberia is that people who know they’ve been exposed to the virus often keep it a secret until they’re desperately ill and highly contagious. They fear the embarrassment, the stigma and the prospect of losing their income.

But the Brownes went public.

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Since the Ebola epidemic started, attendance at Trinity Cathedral in Monrovia, Liberia, has risen by about 20 percent, a church leader says.

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Since the Ebola epidemic started, attendance at Trinity Cathedral in Monrovia, Liberia, has risen by about 20 percent, a church leader says.

Since the Ebola epidemic started, attendance at Trinity Cathedral in Monrovia, Liberia, has risen by about 20 percent, a church leader says.

Jon Hamilton/NPR

“I left work immediately, wrapped up everything, called the treasurer, the bishop, my colleagues,” Herman said. Then Trokon and Herman quarantined themselves for 21 days.

Even their children we’re not allowed to come upstairs until the couple knew they did not have Ebola.

Herman said he was hoping his congregation would learn a powerful lesson from his family’s experience: “Once you slip mentally, in terms of being aware and conscious, the smallest slip could cause you grave harm,” he said after the church service.

That’s a message Liberians have heard constantly from the government. But many people in Monrovia say they don’t trust a government. They consider it corrupt. So the messages can have more of an impact when they come from a spiritual leader.

Reverend Browne begun educating his congregation about Ebola long before it affected the family directly. And it’s clear the message has been received at the church. People sanitize their hands before entering the cathedral. A priest delivers the Holy Communion wafers with tweezers. The church program tells the congregation: “Do not hide sick persons.”

But Trokon Browne says those are relatively easy steps. What’s harder, she says, is to keep a safe distance when a friend or family member is sick, perhaps with Ebola.

“I cannot see my husband sick and not touch him. Or I cannot see my child sick,” she said. “Ebola might as well kill us. So it’s still very hard. Trust me it’s still very hard.”

It’s also hard for some people to accept the way Ebola appears to punish those who are trying to follow Christian teachings, Herman Browne said. That’s why some in his congregation consider the disease demonic.

“Those who don’t care and those who don’t want to express their care are those who survive. Those who actually care are those who die,” he said. “At the heart of it, for some of us with religious eyes, is an anti-care, anti-love message. And that can be very draining.”

This time, the message is less harsh. Trokon wasn’t infected. And her sick friend was one of the lucky ones who survived Ebola.

Article source: http://www.npr.org/blogs/goatsandsoda/2014/10/20/357399593/ebola-in-church-a-reverends-quarantine-spreads-the-word?utm_medium=RSS&utm_campaign=world

Beijing Marathoners Powered Through Thick Smog

Uncategorized | Posted by Israel Grossman Attorney
Oct 20 2014

Before Sunday’s Beijing Marathon, smog levels were 12 times above what is considered safe for humans. But organizers refused to cancel. Instead, they handed out sponges to clean exposed skin.

Article source: http://www.npr.org/2014/10/20/357508933/beijing-marathoners-powered-through-thick-smog?utm_medium=RSS&utm_campaign=world

Mars Probes Give Scientists Box Seats For Rare Comet Flyby

Uncategorized | Posted by Israel Grossman Attorney
Oct 19 2014

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An artist’s rendering of the flyby with Mars orbiters taking cover. Note that the image says “spacecraft not to scale.”

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An artist's rendering of the flyby with Mars orbiters taking cover. Note that the image says spacecraft not to scale.

An artist’s rendering of the flyby with Mars orbiters taking cover. Note that the image says “spacecraft not to scale.”

NASA/JPL-Caltech

Mars is about to get a visitor that comes around only once in a million years or so.

The arrival of a “mountain-sized” comet, Siding Spring (C/2013 A1), is made all the more extraordinary by the fact that humans — who were busy refining their stone-tool-making skills the last time such an event might have occurred — now have spacecraft from multiple countries at the Red Planet to see it happen.

“Think about a comet that started its travel probably at the dawn of man and it’s just coming in close now,” Carey Lisse, a senior astrophysicist at the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory, said at a news briefing about Comet Siding Spring last week. “And the reason we can actually observe it is because we have built satellites and rovers. We’ve now got outposts around Mars.”

As the nucleus of the comet passes about 80,000 miles from the Martian surface The nucleus of the comet will make its closest approach to Mars at 1:32 p.m. ET on Sunday, orbiters from NASA, Europe and India are all being repurposed to quickly observe the comet flyby and then beat a retreat before the comet’s tail swings by.

As The Associated Press writes: “The orbiting craft will observe the incoming iceball, then hide behind Mars for protection from potentially dangerous debris in the comet tail. NASA’s Opportunity and Curiosity rovers will be shielded by the Martian atmosphere. They should have the best seats in the house.”

Emily Lakdawalla, a senior editor for The Planetary Society, says: “There are tons and tons of scientific observations planned by Mars orbiters, Mars rovers, and Earth-based observatories. In fact, most of the facilities that are planning to observe Siding Spring have already begun their work, and will continue observation for days after the encounter.”

Lakdawalla adds: “It’s not like a Mars landing; there won’t be a single moment when a bunch of serious-looking engineers suddenly erupt into cheers. Instead, there’ll be many smaller, non-televised moments as instrument teams receive their data from far-flung spacecraft and telescopes, spread out over the next several days. For the most part, the images of the comet won’t be instant classics; many will show only a single pixel, or a faint smudge. Some of the data won’t even arrive on Earth until the middle of next week.”

As astronomer Phil Plait, who writes the Bad Astronomy blog for Slate, notes:

The NASA comet page says the coma (the big fuzzy cloud of gas surrounding the solid nucleus of the comet) is about 20,000 km across. At closest approach, that means that if you were standing on Mars, the comet would appear to be over 8° across! That means that if you have a big hand, you could just barely block it with your upraised fist.

“That’s astonishing. What a view that would be! And while the astronomer part of my brain is envious and wishes we could see something like that from Earth, the human part of my brain is screaming obscenities at the astronomer part of my brain. In real life, it’s probably best comets keep their distance from us.”

Article source: http://www.npr.org/blogs/thetwo-way/2014/10/18/357184354/mars-probes-give-scientists-box-seats-for-rare-comet-flyby?utm_medium=RSS&utm_campaign=world

Vatican Bishops Scrap Opening To Gays, Divorced Members

Uncategorized | Posted by Israel Grossman Attorney
Oct 19 2014

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Pope Francis opens the morning session of a two-week synod on family issues at the Vatican, on Saturday.

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Pope Francis opens the morning session of a two-week synod on family issues at the Vatican, on Saturday.

Pope Francis opens the morning session of a two-week synod on family issues at the Vatican, on Saturday.

Andrew Medichini/AP

Updated at 3:50 p.m. ET

A synod of Catholic bishops gathered at the Vatican has decided to eliminate a landmark opening to gays that had appeared in an interim summary of discussions made public earlier this week that had appeared to signal a possible shift in the tone of the church.

The move to scrap the message about gays, as well as one that would have signaled more acceptance of divorced church members, is seen as a sign of deep division in the ranks of the bishops.

The Associated Press reports:

“The bishops failed to approve even a watered-down section on ministering to gays that stripped away the welcoming tone contained in a draft document earlier in the week.

“Two other paragraphs concerning the other hot-button issue at the synod – whether divorced and civilly remarried Catholics can receive communion – also failed to pass.”

According to the BBC: “The Pope said the full draft document, including the rejected paragraphs, should nonetheless be published.

“Correspondents say the text welcoming gay people and remarried Catholics had been watered down in the final version that was voted on – but it appears that they still met with resistance from conservatives.

“Speaking after the vote, Pope Francis told attendees he would have been ‘worried and saddened’ if there had not been ‘animated discussions’ or if ‘everyone had been in agreement or silent in a false and acquiescent peace’, AP news agency reported.”

As The National Catholic Reporter’s Vatican correspondent Joshua McElwee told NPR when Tuesday’s preliminary summary was released, the bishops had said they wanted “to reach out to modern society and walk with people as they apply church doctrine alongside mercy.”

But by the time of the their final report today, the language on gays and divorced members was gone.

Meanwhile, NPR’s Sylvia Poggioli reports from Rome that the mayor of the Italian capital, Ignazio Marino, has defied the a law against gay marriage in the country by registering 16 same-sex marriages celebrated abroad.

“Marino said his decision … is an important step in the fight for equal rights for all,” Sylvia reports.

“The move came after the interior minister, Angelino Alfano, sent a notice to local prefects saying registrations of gay marriages would be voided,” Sylvia says. “Registrations had already been under way in several Italian municipalities, including Milan and Bologna.”

Article source: http://www.npr.org/blogs/thetwo-way/2014/10/18/357192760/vatican-bishops-scrap-opening-to-gays-divorced-members?utm_medium=RSS&utm_campaign=world

Saudi Cleric’s Death Sentence Focuses Shia Anger On Ruling Family

Uncategorized | Posted by Israel Grossman Attorney
Oct 19 2014

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Sheikh Nimr al-Nimr lies wounded in the back of a police car following his arrest in July 2012. A Saudi court sentenced him to death this week for disloyalty to the ruling family and other charges.

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Sheikh Nimr al-Nimr lies wounded in the back of a police car following his arrest in July 2012. A Saudi court sentenced him to death this week for disloyalty to the ruling family and other charges.

Sheikh Nimr al-Nimr lies wounded in the back of a police car following his arrest in July 2012. A Saudi court sentenced him to death this week for disloyalty to the ruling family and other charges.

AFP/Getty Images

Protests broke out in Saudi Arabia this week over the death sentence of a leading Shiite cleric. Human rights activists call his sentencing political and warn that by killing him, the country may deepen sectarian discord and spur more violence.

Sheikh Nimr al-Nimr was a leading voice during protests in 2011 and 2012 by the minority Shiite Muslim community.

The Shiites were demanding reforms to anti-Shiite practices that shut them out of top government employment and prevent them from building places of worship. Saudi Arabia’s ruling family and the majority of the country are Sunni Muslims.

Nimr was a bold voice for Saudi Shias.

“From the moment you’re born, you’re surrounded by fear,” he said in a 2011 sermon. “The people took to the streets demanding freedom, dignity and reform. We don’t mind getting arrested with those who’ve been detained and we don’t even mind shedding our blood for their sake.”

Less than a year later, Nimr was arrested, and shot and wounded in the process. Police claim he used violence against them; his supporters and family say that’s not true.

He was sentenced to death Wednesday on charges that include being disloyal to the ruling family, using violence and seeking foreign meddling.

Human Rights Watch researcher Adam Coogle says the sentencing was political and could bring more unrest.

“This can end up festering over a long period of time and ultimately leads to instability,” Coogle says.

Coogle says the court that sentenced Nimr, a specialized criminal court, was originally formed to try terrorism cases but is now being used to silence critics. Nimr’s nephew, an activist, was also sentenced to death in the same court. Human Rights Watch is calling for the court to be abolished.

Coogle says western allies like the U.S. need to address Saudi Arabia’s human rights record.

“If we’re going to support human rights in Syria, for example, it’s also important to have conversations with our own ally,” he says.

In Saudi, small protests have begun.

In the eastern province of Qatif, home to a large part of Saudi’s Shiite community, protesters called for the downfall of the ruling family. If Nimr is killed, activists warn, the unrest will grow.

Article source: http://www.npr.org/2014/10/18/357108117/saudi-clerics-death-sentence-focuses-shia-anger-on-ruling-family?utm_medium=RSS&utm_campaign=world

Oscar Pistorius’ Sentencing And The Classic True Crime Novel

Uncategorized | Posted by Israel Grossman Attorney
Oct 18 2014


Twenty years after 0.J. Simpson’s “Trial Of The Century,” another murder trial featuring a global sports star has taken its place in the spotlight.

The crime in question is that of double amputee and superstar Oscar Pistorius, who shot and killed his model girlfriend, Reeva Steenkamp in 2013. Pistorius escaped a murder charge, but he was convicted of culpable homicide. His sentencing hearing has been going on all week.

Pistorius never denied shooting Steenkamp. He even handed himself over after it happened. He says he fired that gun thinking an intruder was breaking into his house. So there’s been a killing, and we know who did it. The question is why.

Which makes it a good time to re-read In Cold Blood by Truman Capote. It’s a classic of the true crime genre, the one against which all others are judged, and the most disturbing, compelling, book I’ve ever read. The big reveal in In Cold Blood isn’t who killed the Clutter family — you know who murdered Herb, Bonnie and their two teenage kids. The challenge for Capote, and the reason it’s the perfect book to read now, is that he managed to make the story gripping even though you know the end.

He spent hours interviewing everyone involved. He sat down with the killers, and developed personal relationships with them. Dick Hickock and Perry Smith had heard about some money in a safe in the home of Herb Clutter. Their plan was to rob the house and kill the family, leaving no witnesses behind.

Capote uses a number of different perspectives — the killers themselves and also neighbors and investigators — to weave his story together. He wrote In Cold Blood like a novel, re-creating dialogue, which became controversial when the book was published.

“You exist in a half-world suspended between two superstructures, one self-expression and the other self-destruction,” Capote writes about one of the killers. “You are strong, but there is a flaw in your strength, and unless you learn to control it the flaw will prove stronger than your strength and defeat you.”

He could have been writing about Oscar Pistorius. Could the killing of Reeva Steenkamp have been purely an accident? Either way, like one of Capote’s anti-heroes, Pistorius has shown himself to be a flawed character, and the end result was tragic.

Mandy Wiener is the author of One Tragic Night.

Read an excerpt of In Cold Blood

Article source: http://www.npr.org/2014/10/17/356894792/oscar-pistorius-sentencing-and-the-classic-true-crime-novel?utm_medium=RSS&utm_campaign=world

Universities To Speakers Who’ve Visited West Africa: En Garde!

Uncategorized | Posted by Israel Grossman Attorney
Oct 18 2014

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Senegalese fencer Abdoulaye Thiam (left) competed against Jason Rogers of the U.S. during the 2008 Olympics. Due to Ebola fears, a World Cup fencing event set for Senegal this month has been canceled.

Philippe Desmazes/AFP/Getty Images


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Senegalese fencer Abdoulaye Thiam (left) competed against Jason Rogers of the U.S. during the 2008 Olympics. Due to Ebola fears, a World Cup fencing event set for Senegal this month has been canceled.

Senegalese fencer Abdoulaye Thiam (left) competed against Jason Rogers of the U.S. during the 2008 Olympics. Due to Ebola fears, a World Cup fencing event set for Senegal this month has been canceled.

Philippe Desmazes/AFP/Getty Images

By now, it’s well known that there are a limited number of ways you can contract Ebola: from the blood, sweat, saliva or other bodily fluids of someone who already is ill with the disease.

There are many more ways you can’t get Ebola: by meeting someone who has recently spent time in West Africa, for example, or sitting through a lecture about Ebola. You can’t even get Ebola if someone with Ebola happens to be near you. To become infected, you’d have to be exposed directly to their bodily fluids.

Yet in the past week, organizations have begun to crack down on events featuring West Africans or those who have returned from a trip to West Africa. The panic surrounding Ebola, a disease about which we actually know a fair amount, has led to some decisions that incorporate very little of that knowledge. Here are four:

Fencers Are En Garde When It Comes To Senegal Tournament

Dakar, the capital of Senegal, was scheduled to host a men’s sabre fencing World Cup event at the end of October, but the sport’s governing body canceled the event on Wednesday. Why? Senegal borders Guinea, one of three West African countries hit hard by Ebola. Senegal saw just one Ebola case in August. Health officials contained the patient and those with whom he had contact, and no further cases were identified.

According to News Agency Nigeria, the decision to cancel the event has not been met with much opposition. The German Fencing Federation’s director of sports, Sven Ressel, told reporters that the decision “absolutely makes sense. Precautionary measures are being taken.” Meanwhile, the World Health Organization today declared Senegal Ebola-free since the country has gone 42 days, or double the incubation period, without a new case.

The University of Georgia shuns a top Liberian journalist

The University of Georgia’s Grady School of Journalism and Department of Tropical and Emerging Global Diseases invited Wade Williams to campus for an October 23 talk titled “Eyewitness to Ebola: A Liberian Journalist’s Perspective.” Williams is the chief of the news desk at Front Page Africa and one of Liberia’s top journalists. She was also going to be honored for “her journalistic courage” by the Grady School, according to a university press release.

Students and administrators expressed concern since Williams would be coming directly from Liberia to deliver the talk without waiting for the 21-day Ebola incubation period. So her visit has been postponed until the outbreak subsides. Washington Post journalist Todd Frankel will take her place. He returned from Sierra Leone at the beginning of September. The talk has been renamed “Eyewitness to Ebola: A Journalist’s Perspective.”

Case Western Reserve knows better than former CDC Director

The chief health editor for ABC News, Dr. Richard Besser, was scheduled to speak at Cleveland’s Case Western Reserve University on Wednesday, addressing the need for good communication during health crises. He is particularly well-suited to deliver this talk: he served as acting director for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention during the 2009 H1N1 flu outbreak and visited West Africa at the end of September to report on the Ebola outbreak.

The latter qualification proved problematic for the organizers of the talk. In an op-ed that Besser wrote for the Washington Post, he quoted a letter they sent disinviting him: “Although we understand how small the risk is, we felt that we needed to err on the side of extreme caution because we don’t have the ability to ask all potential attendees if they feel comfortable with the situation.”

Besser was asked to deliver the talk over Skype but he declined, not wanting to “feed the idea that anyone who has been to West Africa, even if not sick, poses a risk.”

Syracuse University disinvites a post-quarantine journalist

Syracuse invited Pulitzer Prize-winning photojournalist Michel du Cille to participate in its fall workshop for journalism students this weekend. Du Cille has a lot of real-world experience to share with these young minds: three weeks ago, he returned from a trip to Liberia, where he covered Ebola for the Washington Post. On Oct. 17, he passed the 21-day Ebola incubation period without showing any symptoms. Two days earlier, he met with Dr. Thomas Frieden, the CDC director, and spent a day photographing him as he testified in front of Congress.

What’s good enough for Capitol Hill isn’t quite good enough for Syracuse. Citing concerns about student health, the university disinvited du Cille and his wife, photojournalist Nikki Kahn, who had not been to Liberia. The dean of the Newhouse School of Public Communication, Lorraine Branham, expressed misgivings about du Cille being on campus on the 17th, the day his quarantine expired. In an interview with News Photographer magazine, she said, “Twenty-one days is the CDC’s standard, but there have been questions raised about whether the incubation period is longer.” In fact it’s well acknowledged that 21 days is the standard.

“If they’re not showing any symptoms and they’re out of their incubation period they are not a threat to anyone around them,” says Dr. Nahid Bhadelia, director of infection control at the National Emerging Infectious Diseases Laboratory at Boston University. And what about those who seem to think a person could be contagious even beyond that time? “By taking that stance,” Bhadelia says, “you are actually leading to further public confusion and miseducation.”

Article source: http://www.npr.org/blogs/goatsandsoda/2014/10/18/356999766/universities-to-speakers-whove-visited-west-africa-en-garde?utm_medium=RSS&utm_campaign=world

The Ebola Survivors Who Can’t Go Home

Uncategorized | Posted by Israel Grossman Attorney
Oct 18 2014

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Jusoisatu Jusu and her son, Sam, are among the 30-some survivors living in the old Lassa Fever ward at Kenema Hospital.

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Jusoisatu Jusu and her son, Sam, are among the 30-some survivors living in the old Lassa Fever ward at Kenema Hospital.

Jusoisatu Jusu and her son, Sam, are among the 30-some survivors living in the old Lassa Fever ward at Kenema Hospital.

Anders Kelto/NPR

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Meriatu Kamara, 35, lost her husband and two children to Ebola. But she and three of her children survived: (from left) Sallaymatu, Abubakar, Aminatu. They’ve lived in the survivors’ ward for two months. They’re from Makeni, a city 130 miles away and haven’t yet been able to make their way home.

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Meriatu Kamara, 35, lost her husband and two children to Ebola. But she and three of her children survived: (from left) Sallaymatu, Abubakar, Aminatu. They've lived in the survivors' ward for two months. They're from Makeni, a city 130 miles away and haven't yet been able to make their way home.

Meriatu Kamara, 35, lost her husband and two children to Ebola. But she and three of her children survived: (from left) Sallaymatu, Abubakar, Aminatu. They’ve lived in the survivors’ ward for two months. They’re from Makeni, a city 130 miles away and haven’t yet been able to make their way home.

Anders Kelto/NPR

Jusoisatu Jusu, 24, lives in a room in an abandoned hospital ward with her six-year-old son. They’ve survived Ebola. And now they’re stuck.

“It’s terrible,” she says. “We have a lot of things to do, so we want to get back.”

But they can’t. They live in a town called Makeni, about 130 miles away. Public transportation around the country is limited or canceled because of the outbreak. And Jusu doesn’t have the money to pay for a private ride.

About 30 Ebola survivors live in this hospital ward in Kenema, a city in Sierra Leone. It was once a center for doctors who did research on Lassa fever, caused by a virus that was in Sierra Leone long before Ebola arrived. When Ebola hit, many staff members in the ward died, and the building was abandoned. Now, it’s essentially a squatter camp.

Like other survivors, Jusu had to hand over her clothes to be destroyed when she arrived. She’s been given one new outfit — a long, green skirt and pink tank top.

“I wash and I wear it the same thing, every day,” she says.

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Kitibe, 26, has recovered from Ebola and was ready to go home. Then the hospital told him he might have TB.

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Kitibe, 26, has recovered from Ebola and was ready to go home. Then the hospital told him he might have TB.

Kitibe, 26, has recovered from Ebola and was ready to go home. Then the hospital told him he might have TB.

Anders Kelto/NPR

Some survivors are able to go home, but they’re not always welcome. Many are told they can’t get water from a shared tap or sell food at community markets, says Elizabeth Boakarie, a counselor at the hospital. Every night, she and her colleague, social worker Gladys Gassama, speak on radio shows, telling listeners to stop shunning survivors.

Another survivor at the hospital is a 26-year-old man named Kitibe. “I was tormented when I was in the Ebola ward,” he says. “There was [so much] pain within my body.”

Kitibe has recovered and is ready to be discharged. Social worker Gladys Gassama takes a seat next to him for a counseling session about life after Ebola. She tells him that people in his community probably know that he had Ebola. She says when he goes home, he should try to educate people about the disease and should not act as if he’s contagious because people might think he is.

Then Kitibe gets some bad news. A nurse named Donnell Tholley tells him he will not be able to leave the hospital today because he is suspected to have tuberculosis. If his test comes back positive, he’ll have to spend a few weeks, possibly up to six months, in a tuberculosis unit at the hospital.

Only the TB ward is not able to accept him at the moment. So he wanders into the building where other Ebola survivors are hanging out. The room feels like a jail cell — brick walls, metal bars over the windows, a filthy bathroom off to one side. He sits on a wooden bench, next to a teenage boy, and watches the children play with a toy car.

And no one in the crowded room seems to know he likely has a contagious lung disease.

Article source: http://www.npr.org/blogs/goatsandsoda/2014/10/18/357008487/the-ebola-survivors-who-cant-go-home?utm_medium=RSS&utm_campaign=world

Blizzard, Avalanches Kill More Than 27 Trekkers In Nepal

Uncategorized | Posted by Israel Grossman Attorney
Oct 17 2014

Copyright © 2014 NPR. For personal, noncommercial use only. See Terms of Use. For other uses, prior permission required.

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

In Nepal, a fierce early winter blizzard has claimed the lives of at least 27 trekkers. They were killed on the popular Annapurna circuit in the Himalayas. Others are still missing. The dead included Nepali herders and guides, as well as hikers from Vietnam and Israel to Canada and Poland. The BBC’s Andrew North is in Kathmandu and he’s been talking with survivors about the fast-moving conditions that trapped hundreds near the top of a high mountain pass.

ANDREW NORTH, BYLINE: There’s actually a small shelter or actually a tee shop that is run just during the trekking season at the top of the pass. And people crowded inside there as the weather kind of got worse and worse around them – huge dumps of snow coming down. And they were then trying to decide well, was it best to stay put or whether to try make a break for it? Because many were already starting to suffer from hypothermia – and from what we understand, it was actually a group that decided to make a break for it who came off worse. And they started to descend and they quickly got lost in the white-out conditions. And then many succumbed to exposure.

BLOCK: And along with the blizzard and the deaths from exposure that you’re describing, there were also avalanches, right?

NORTH: That’s right because the amount of snow that’s come down – we’re talking about six feet or more of fresh snow. And of course when you’ve got so much fresh snow, the wind blowing around, it’s highly unstable. And one man I was talking to today who was an Australian, he was saying there were just avalanches – were shooting down everywhere. And he was actually very grateful to his guides because they’d been staying in a hut slightly further down the mountain not actually on the pass itself. But because the guides realized just how much snow was coming down, they told him and his climbing buddy to move to another hut. And the next morning they found that that hut where they had been was completely buried in snow.

BLOCK: Along with the efforts to recover the bodies of those who died on the circuit, there’re also rescue efforts underway. How are those going? And are they finding survivors?

NORTH: Dozens of people have now been rescued. The latest we’ve heard from the authorities is that over 200 people have actually been rescued. But of course also, this gives you an idea of the scale of just how many people were caught up in this. Because, you know, this is the peak of the trekking season. This is one of the most popular trails. And it gives you an idea of just how many people now try to do routes like this.

BLOCK: Andrew, this is being described as a freakish blizzard – the effects of a cyclone that hit India. Were there any weather warnings at all?

NORTH: There’s already some dispute about this. Some say there were some warnings. Others are saying well, there weren’t enough. But I think also this is a bit of a reminder to a lot of people that even though trekking and hiking is a much safer thing to do than trying to climb the mountains, it’s still dangerous. And, I mean, I think also talking to some of the survivors today, it was striking how some of them perhaps, you know, they hadn’t fully taken on board the potential risks that they could run in going on a trek like this.

BLOCK: This disaster along the trekking route in Nepal is on the heels of another disaster in April on Mount Everest – 16 Nepalese guides were killed in that. What are the effects of this on Nepal – on the country itself – and the industry?

NORTH: It’s a very complicated picture because the thousands of climbers and trekkers that come here every year are a critical source of revenue for Nepal, which is still one of the poorest countries in Asia. Disasters like this most recent one involving the trekkers is definitely raising concerns here that this whole business model could be affected. It could be lost if more of these incidents keep happening.

BLOCK: I’ve been talking with Andrew North of the BBC. He’s in Kathmandu, Nepal. Andrew, thanks so much.

NORTH: Thank you.

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