umu.sePublications
Change search
CiteExportLink to record
Permanent link

Direct link
Cite
Citation style
  • apa
  • ieee
  • modern-language-association-8th-edition
  • vancouver
  • Other style
More styles
Language
  • de-DE
  • en-GB
  • en-US
  • fi-FI
  • nn-NO
  • nn-NB
  • sv-SE
  • Other locale
More languages
Output format
  • html
  • text
  • asciidoc
  • rtf
"A time of fear": local, national, and international responses to a large Ebola outbreak in Uganda
Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Public Health and Clinical Medicine, Epidemiology and Global Health.ORCID iD: 0000-0003-1332-4138
2012 (English)In: Globalization and Health, ISSN 1744-8603, E-ISSN 1744-8603, Vol. 8, 15Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

BACKGROUND: This paper documents and analyses some of the responses to the largest Ebola outbreak on record, which took place in Uganda between September 2000 and February 2001. Four hundred and twenty five people developed clinical symptoms in three geographically distinct parts of the country (Gulu, Masindi, and Mbarara), of whom 224 (53%) died. Given the focus of previous social scientific Ebola research on experiences in those communities that have been directly affected, the article examines the ways in which fear, altruism, and stigma were felt and enacted in a wider variety of contexts - local, national, and international - over the course of the outbreak. METHODS: Responses to the outbreak were gauged through the articles, editorials, cartoons, and letters that were published in the country's two main English language daily national newspapers: the New Vision and the Monitor (now the Daily Monitor). All the relevant pieces from these two sources over the course of the epidemic were cut out, entered onto a computer, and the originals filed. The three a priori codes - based on the local, national, and international levels - were expanded into six, to include specific issues that emerged inductively during analysis. The data within each code were subsequently worked into coherent, chronological narratives. RESULTS: A total of 639 cuttings were included in the analysis. Strong and varied responses to the outbreak were identified from across the globe. These included, among others: confusion, anger, and serious stigma in affected communities; medical staff working themselves to exhaustion, with some quitting their posts; patients fleeing from hospitals; calls on spiritual forces for protection against infection; a well-coordinated national control strategy; and the imposition of some international travel restrictions. Responses varied both quantitatively and qualitatively according to the level (i.e. local, national, or international) at which they were manifested. CONCLUSIONS: The Ugandan experience of 2000/2001 demonstrates that responses to an Ebola outbreak can be very dramatic, but perhaps disproportionate to the actual danger presented. An important objective for any future outbreak control strategy must be to prevent excessive fear, which, it is expected, would reduce stigma and other negative outcomes. To this end, the value of openness in the provision of public information - and, critically, of being seen to be open - cannot be overstated.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
BioMed Central, 2012. Vol. 8, 15
Keyword [en]
Ebola, Outbreak, Uganda, Fear, Stigma, Altruism
National Category
Public Health, Global Health, Social Medicine and Epidemiology
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-60185DOI: 10.1186/1744-8603-8-15ISI: 000310283100001PubMedID: 22695277OAI: oai:DiVA.org:umu-60185DiVA: diva2:558625
Available from: 2012-10-04 Created: 2012-10-04 Last updated: 2017-12-07Bibliographically approved

Open Access in DiVA

fulltext(418 kB)260 downloads
File information
File name FULLTEXT02.pdfFile size 418 kBChecksum SHA-512
1a9cb06cc84d88ce3cb2e9acff5d318cb2af4615659174aa63196c0ec2f4a9f883562a205f170e0794d729fd754930a4d008e0f3ceb566209ad80bc26d9553e2
Type fulltextMimetype application/pdf

Other links

Publisher's full textPubMed

Search in DiVA

By author/editor
Kinsman, John
By organisation
Epidemiology and Global Health
In the same journal
Globalization and Health
Public Health, Global Health, Social Medicine and Epidemiology

Search outside of DiVA

GoogleGoogle Scholar
Total: 260 downloads
The number of downloads is the sum of all downloads of full texts. It may include eg previous versions that are now no longer available

doi
pubmed
urn-nbn

Altmetric score

doi
pubmed
urn-nbn
Total: 341 hits
CiteExportLink to record
Permanent link

Direct link
Cite
Citation style
  • apa
  • ieee
  • modern-language-association-8th-edition
  • vancouver
  • Other style
More styles
Language
  • de-DE
  • en-GB
  • en-US
  • fi-FI
  • nn-NO
  • nn-NB
  • sv-SE
  • Other locale
More languages
Output format
  • html
  • text
  • asciidoc
  • rtf