Epidemiologic Surveillance in Public and Global Health

Epidemiologic Surveillance in Public and Global Health

Epidemiologic surveillance is used in public and global health. For this Assignment, begin by locating a recent article about an outbreak of an infectious or communicable disease. The article can come from a newspaper or other source but your paper must be supported with at least three scholarly sources of evidence in the literature which may include your text or course readings.

Write a 3- to 4-page paper that includes the following:

  1. A summary of the article, including the title and author
  2. Identify the title of the article with in-text citation and corresponding reference in reference list
  3. The relationship among causal agents, susceptible persons, and environmental factors (epidemiological triangle)
  4. The role of the nurse in addressing the outbreak

5.Possible health promotion/health protection strategies that could have been implemented by nurses to mitigate the outbreak

Prior to submission, refer to the Week 3 Assignment Rubric.

In the article “Suspected Cases of Ebola Rise to 29 in the Democratic Republic of Congo”, Crady (2017) reported on the issue of Ebola and the responses that both governmental and non-governmental bodies undertook to combat it. Crady (2017) criticizes the WHO and the national government of the Democratic Republic of Congo for their lackadaisical response to the outbreak. Also, the article addresses the issue of the risks associated with the disease at both the national and global level, concluding that the latter is moderate while the former is high. Moreover, the article speaks about the costs that were involved in addressing the disease during the first six months and the challenges that the WHO and the local agencies faced while treating the victims of the condition. These challenges, according to the article, include costly treatment regimen, lack of transport infrastructure and the absence of hospital capacity to treat Ebola. Further, the article postulates that the absence of a vaccine for the condition was hampering the interventions that the WHO and its partners in the region were adopting and that the stakeholders had toyed with the idea of using a vaccine that had not been approved by the World Health Organization. Therefore, the article as written by Crady (2017) addresses all the fundamental issues that confronted the WHO and local and governmental agencies in addressing Ebola in the DRC even as it spread amongst the people of the affected village Epidemiologic Surveillance in Public and Global Health.


            Studies reveal that to truly understand Ebola, a study of its epidemiological triangle regarding its outbreak becomes fundamental. To this end, the study of the interactions between the host, the environmental and the causative agents provides a clear picture of the epidemiology of Ebola. The Ebola outbreak in The Democratic Republic of Congo occurred as a result of a virus, whose genome has a negative single-stranded linear RNA. According to Kaur et al., (2017), the Ebola virus encodes seven genes (VP24, NP, VP40, VP35, GP VP30, and L). In addition to this information, there are five known virus species with the genus Ebola and they include Tai Forest Ebola virus, Zaire Ebola virus (ZEBOV), Reston Ebola virus (REBOV), Sudan Ebola virus (SEBOV), and Bundibugyo Ebola virus (BEBOV) (Kaur et al., 2017). As indicated in the brackets, the five viruses are different due to their varied genomes in terms of their gene overlap location, sequence and number. The Zaire Ebola virus (ZEBOV) virus infected the Congolese people from wildlife when one of them came into contact with a monkey. According to outbreak data, the Congolese of all ages and sexes were equally exposed to the virus. Further, Ebola manipulated the functioning of their innate immune system. The EBOV protein down regulated the expression of the gene responsible for the production of the EBOV, which affected the response of the immune system to the Ebola virus infection. Specifically, the bodies of the infected individuals lacked the capacity to respond to interferon proteins such as interferon-gamma, beta and alpha. Through the inhibitions, EBOV expedites the process of spreading throughout the body. In addition to this, the Ebola outbreak occurred in one of the remotest areas in the village. According to Levine (2007), such areas are inhabited by the holloi polloi of the society; therefore, the presence of poverty could also have contributed to the outbreak.

The EVD outbreak in humans in Sub-Saharan Africa, including the DRC, where Ebola is most prevalent, suggests that the condition correlates to low temperatures and high absolute humidity. However, Ebola outbreaks in humans have previously been linked with wet and dry seasons.  Further, bats migrate seasonally and such migrations could increase their contact with humans as well as other animals. According to Kaur and his colleagues (2017), bats have many pathogenic viruses that are dangerous to other humans and mammals. During their flights, their body temperatures and metabolic rates increase, making the bats to mimic the impact of febrile immune response, thus allowing them to blunt the virulence of the Ebola virus in their bodies. Consequently, the behavioral and seasonal changes in the migratory patterns of bats influence their capacity to infect humans and other non-human hosts. Researchers have suspected that there was a correlation between the Ebola outbreak in Congo and the absolute humidity that was experienced during that period.

Nurses are an important part of the healthcare system and as such, they have an important role to play in the management of Ebola outbreaks. The mechanics of Ebola are such that there is no cure for the viral disease, just like many viral diseases. Therefore, the primary role of public health nurses is to offer supportive nursing care to the infected patients (McGills & Kashin, 2017). To this end, nurses give Ebola patients intravenous hydration as well as oral nutrition, feeding and cleaning patients, managing nausea and diarrhea, as well as supervising their general health status. In other words, nurses are the ones who offer care in quarantined places and this places them in direct contact with the patients Epidemiologic Surveillance in Public and Global Health .

According to Holz (2017), Ebola is a dangerous disease with a high mortality rate. Therefore, there are elaborate strategies that governments through public health nurses need to adopt so as to mitigate the outbreak. Fundamentally, preparedness is an important intervention that reduces the fatality rate of such a condition. Further, the government should also promote containment by instructing nurses to isolate and quarantine suspected cases. This would have reduced the human-to-human contact between infected and non-infected persons. Further, the government would need to provide nurses with disinfectants that they would use to conduct environmental controls (Holz, 2017). Through strict barrier protection strategies, the nurses would have the capacity to disinfect bed lines and clothing. Lastly, strict burial procedures also need to be observed. The public health nurses need to guide the community in instituting measures to appropriately handle and safely bury the deceased. All these strategies will ensure that the spread of the disease is contained within the affected village.

In conclusion, the article comprehensively addressed several important issues regarding the Ebola virus in the Democratic Republic of Congo. The efforts and challenges involved in combating Ebola were revealed in addition to aiming criticism at the World Health Organization. Further, the epidemiological triangle revealed that the Ebola virus is contagious amongst humans, occurs in humid conditions, and mostly affects the poor section of a population. In addition, public health nurses play a leading role in giving comfort to the victims of the condition and instituting measures aimed at preventing its spread. Lastly, the government through the nurses undertakes several strategies including interventions and health promotion to mitigate the effects of the disease. Therefore, Ebola is a deadly disease and the governments in conjunction with nurses play a fundamental role in confronting the menace.


Crady, D. (2017, May 18). Suspected Cases of Ebola Rise to 29 in Democratic Republic of Congo – The New York Times. Retrieved from https://www.nytimes.com/2017/05/18/world/africa/ebola-outbreak-congo-virus.html

Kaur, G., Sachdeva, S., Jiha, D., & Sulania, A. (2017). Ebola virus disease in the light of epidemiological triad. Medical Research, 20(1), 1-9.

McGills, L., & Kashin, J. (2015). Public Understanding of the Role of Nurses During Ebola. Journal of Nursing Scholarship, 48(1), 91-97.

Levine, R. (2007). Case studies in global health: Millions saved. Sudbury, MA: Jones & Bartlett. Case 9, “Improving the Health of the Poor in Mexico” (pp. 65–72) Epidemiologic Surveillance in Public and Global Health.

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