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ABSTRACT: The outbreak of Ebola hemorrhagic fever in Kikwit, Democratic Republic of the Congo, clearly signaled an end to the days when physicians and researchers could work in relative obscurity on problems of international importance, and it provided many lessons to the international public health and scientific communities. In particular, the outbreak signaled a need for stronger infectious disease surveillance and control worldwide, for improved international preparedness to provide support when similar outbreaks occur, and for accommodating the needs of the press in providing valid information. A need for more broad-based international health regulations and electronic information systems within the World Health Organization also became evident, as did the realization that there are new and more diverse partners able to rapidly respond to international outbreaks. Finally, a need for continued and coordinated Ebola research was identified, especially as concerns development of simple and valid diagnostic tests, better patient management procedures, and identification of the natural reservoir.
The Journal of Infectious Diseases 03/1999; 179 Suppl 1(Suppl. 1):S283-6. DOI:10.1086/514287 · 6.00 Impact Factor