Volunteers for the National Health Service have made it clear that they aren’t happy with the travel restrictions that are being placed on them when they return from West Africa. This news comes to a head just after the NHS opened six treatment centers for Ebola in Africa.
Since the opening of the NHS centers last week, the organization has helped many patients. A lot of the volunteers will be spending their Christmas in Africa while they try to help people who have Ebola. However, it’s not giving up their Christmas that upsets the volunteer workers; it’s having travel restrictions placed on them when they try to return to the UK.
Public Health England has made it very clear to NHS staff that it is increasing all restrictions on people who return from the front line on the war on Ebola. The travel restrictions ban staff members who return from using public transportation. They must also wait an additional three weeks before they are allowed to return home.
These measures were put in place to protect the general public. Staff workers are more than willing to travel across the world to help people in Africa but are upset when they are asked to protect the people back home by not bring Ebola back.
A clinical epidemiologist from Bradford, Dr. John Wright, doesn’t agree with the move. He said that the new measures are a return to the ecology of fear. They are telling people that they can no longer share accommodation, use public transportation or do clinical work. Why not just tell them to wear bells and plague masks. It’s insulting and causing the general public to fear something that they have little need to fear.
However, Ebola is being brought back from Africa to other areas of the world. It’s true that Africa needs help, but it’s important to keep the virus from spreading around to the rest of the world. It would be unfair to infect someone on a train or bus who didn’t take the risk of travelling to West Africa themselves. Unknowingly, they could get the virus just riding next to someone who did travel to Africa.