Lifestyle

Stepping up to stop Ebola in its tracks

FRONT LINE: Former Ballina resident and epidemiologist Barbara Telfer is working to fight the outbreak of Ebola in West Africa as part of Doctors Without Borders. INSET: A medical worker spraying people being discharged from the Ebola treatment centre in Liberia.
FRONT LINE: Former Ballina resident and epidemiologist Barbara Telfer is working to fight the outbreak of Ebola in West Africa as part of Doctors Without Borders. INSET: A medical worker spraying people being discharged from the Ebola treatment centre in Liberia. Ap Inset Image

EPIDEMIOLOGIST Barbara Telfer is at the forefront of the Ebola crisis.

The former Ballina resident is working in the rural Foya district in northern Liberia as part of the Doctors Without Borders team working tirelessly to manage the deadly outbreak.

It's Ms Telfer's fourth mission, having spent almost two years working in Kenya and two missions to Mozambique - all in response to HIV and emergencies.

Her days begin with a 7.30am meeting with the health promotion and outreach team to prioritise the day's activities based on new admissions and data received overnight.

If a patient is admitted overnight, the health promotion and outreach team can go to their village and talk to the community leaders and arrange for a community meeting to see how they're managing, sensitise them to prevention and help identify people at risk for monitoring.

Ms Telfer said patients could come in by themselves, phone the hotline, or be sent by authorities.

"If they're a suspected case, they're admitted to the respective area where they're very rapidly tested for Ebola and managed clinically," she said.

"Everyone has one test. If the first test is positive, they move immediately to the confirmed area of the case management centre.

"If their first test is negative, usually people have a second test because it can take three days from onset for an Ebola test to turn positive."

Ms Telfer said data was collected for every person admitted or who died as a result of the disease.

She said the data and patient notes helped identify the chain of transmission, often up to 20 people.

"That sometimes leads us to the most recent case to let us know where to direct some prevention activities and promotion."

Topics:  ebola, health




GALLERY: Old East Lismore library space to become $1m lab

The 2500 square metre upstairs section of the old SCU library will become the Enterprise Lab. It is located right above the science and technology department of the university.

The space supports 50 businesses and encourage youth to stay local

Metgasco will not replace Peter Henderson

Former Metgasco CEO, Peter Henderson, will not be replaced.

Mining company announces it will not fill its top job

'Date rape' drug seizure is concerning: Police

Festival-goers walk to the entrance of Splendour only to be greeted with a large number of officers.

Dangerous 'date rape' drug was among drugs seized at Splendour.

Latest deals and offers

Vintaea: Why I left The Bachelor on the first night

Vintaea Carlos was one of 22 "bachelorettes" looking for love on the fourth season of The Bachelor.

Queensland beauty leaves Richie at rose ceremony.

Amber Heard claims Johnny Depp is stalling divorce

Amber Heard claims Johnny Depp is delaying their divorce

The Bachelor host: this year's season is a cracker

The Bachelor host Osher Gunsberg.

GUNSBERG says tonight will be "the best night of TV of the year".

Sassy duo unveils Album Deux

RETURN: Baby et Lulu will be playing at the Byron Theatre.

Album Deux is Australian duo Baby Et Lulu’s latest release

An Ab Fab charity screening, darling

THEY ARE BACK: Jennifer Saunders and Joanna Lumley as Eddie and Patsy in Absolutely Fabulous: The Movie.

At Kyogle Community Cinemas on Thursday, August 11

Kerri-Anne Kennerley to Sonia Kruger: "Stay brave"

She said her television peer should "stay brave"

You can own this Queensland town for just $1

Yelarbon

Unprecedented auction of town's business centre with no reserve

Work starts on $15M Caloundra apartment building

Turning the first sod at the Aqua View Apartments site in Kings Beach are (from left) husband-and-wife developers Alex Yuan and Stella Sun with construction company Tomkins director Mike Tomkins and Councillor Tim Dwyer.

Developers excited about addition to Kings Beach skyline

Plans revealed for 1500-lot 'master-planned community'

Precinct will be bounded by Boundary St and Shoesmith Rd

Ecco Ripley sales run sparks prime release

MOVING IN: Sekisui House has announced the release of more residential blocks at Ecco Ripley.

Sekisui House is preparing to unveil more land at Ecco Ripley

Massive residential 9-storey high-rise hit by delays

An artist’s impression of the eight-storey-high apartment complex that Bernoth Holdings wants to build in South Toowoomba, next to the City Golf Club.

Developer struggles to get approved high-rise development started