August 3rd, 2014
12:39 AM ET

Gupta: We're going to see Ebola around the world

Fareed speaks with Sanjay Gupta, CNN’s chief medical correspondent, about the recent outbreak of Ebola. Watch the full interview on "Fareed Zakaria GPS," this Sunday at 10 a.m. and 1 p.m. ET on CNN.

Sanjay, how has this been blocked in the past? Why does this seem unprecedented? Is there something different right now?

You know, in a morbid way, it's because it killed so quickly – it would just burn out. You imagine these remote villages. People weren't moving around as quickly. And the Ebola virus – they would die and before they could start to spread it…it's awful to think about, but that's what was happening.

Now, you have a more mobile group. You have more roads between some of these smaller villages, such as in Guinea, where this originated, and the capital city of Conakry. There are roads. There are all these good passageways now back and forth. And so I think that part of it is certainly contributing. There’s also this idea that there’s a mistrust – I think a little bit of distrust, maybe – even of health care professionals. In part, that's fueled by the fact that there’s no good anti-viral, there’s no good vaccine. So we need to see health care workers show up, they're not offering some panacea to what is happening here.

And so there's not a lot of trust. And a lot of the people who are getting infected aren't hearing the right messages.  And you also have several epidemics sort of starting in different points almost simultaneously now. Usually, it was one place you could target.

Sanjay, how are we going to control the spread? How does one track whether people have Ebola? You think about, as you say, there are roads. There are also trains. There are also planes now. People can get on flights from Liberia, from Sierra Leone. How do we handle this?

Well, I think we're going to hear at some point – I don't know if it's during this outbreak or a future one – we are going to hear about patients with Ebola showing up in other countries in the Western Hemisphere. I can't imagine that not happening, having seen how it all works. And keep in mind, between the time of exposure to the virus and the time someone gets sick, it could be as long as 21 days. It can travel all over the world, obviously, during that time.

I think if there's any good news in this, it's when you think about countries like the United States, Britain, who are having high level discussions on this topic, they are in a much better position to be able to control this. First of all, they could isolate the patient quite quickly, provide fluids and blood clotting factors to try and provide what is called supportive therapy and prevent these patients with the virus becoming epidemics or the source of epidemics.

So I think it's going to happen. We're going to see Ebola around the world. But I think it's not going to turn into lots of mini outbreaks.​


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Topics: GPS Show • Health

soundoff (506 Responses)
  1. EBlack

    Two health care workers who know how to protect themselves somehow get infected at the same time – and also know about a recovered patient whose serum antibodies hold the only hope for stopping the epidemic. Has anyone thought that they might have deliberately infected themselves, set up the connection to CDC ahead of time so they could be treated and studied and perhaps provide the key to saving thousands of lives? Doctors and nurses have done this sort of thing before. And these people work for a religious charity, so self-sacrifice is part of their mantra. I say, good for them! They may be the heroes who end this tragedy.

    August 4, 2014 at 8:14 am | Reply
    • Bob

      You're an a$$

      August 5, 2014 at 5:08 am | Reply
    • rosethornne

      Have you thought about consulting with your own doctor to increase your medications?

      August 7, 2014 at 8:04 pm | Reply
  2. George patton

    I'm afraid Dr. Sanjay Gupta has it right. This disease needs to be dealt with before it wipes out half the world's population.

    August 4, 2014 at 11:42 am | Reply
  3. chri§§y

    Oh good grief...fear mongers are every bit as bad as war mongers!

    August 4, 2014 at 12:11 pm | Reply
  4. chri§§y

    Lol looks like you picked an appropriate name! Because in fact, it looks like THERE IS A CURE!

    August 4, 2014 at 12:39 pm | Reply
  5. palintwit

    Heebie-jeebies !
    Heebie-jeebies !
    Sarah Palin gives me the heebie-jeebies !

    August 4, 2014 at 1:34 pm | Reply
  6. P-51 Mustang Red Tail

    I dunno, but it must have been a very, highly discussed decision (calculated risk) to bring those patients to the shores of America. Dr. Sanjay Gupta doesn't look to happy in his interviews with the CDC doctor and other experts who are trying to alleviate our fears. My question is this: IF after they "cure" the patient...remove any traces of EBOLA in his system and they give him a clean bill of health, send him home to convalesce, then he goes back to work: Who knows IF this thing can re-appear in his system! By then it would have been to late, he would have come into contact with many people since his "cure". Then by some unexpected unforeseen rationale some of those people in America start to show up with EBOLA ? Who will say Oooops! ? Let us trust the experts, but I say....keep close tabs on that patient for a looooooong time.

    August 4, 2014 at 1:54 pm | Reply
  7. chri§§y

    If you go to the money section of the homepage and read about the stock market activities of specific "big Pharmacutecal" companies it might help to explain all of this! And i would be quite surprised if this whole "fear frenzy" wasnt orchestrated just to set that motion in play! Too bad it didnt work out for those companies...but awesome that it worked out for the two ebola victims!

    August 4, 2014 at 2:13 pm | Reply
  8. Romao Neto

    Remember what happen when first HIV appears ? It will be the same , hopefully.

    August 4, 2014 at 2:34 pm | Reply
  9. char

    According to cdc its only contagious when someone shows the symptoms such as fever and this is why its easy to isolate some can can have it but can spread it unless symptoms appear its not airborne either as i read

    August 4, 2014 at 6:53 pm | Reply
  10. Rhea

    Might I suggest while aiming to create a cure and vaccine, we all need to improve quality of life – in case of the dreaded inevitable? People are consumed with themselves and their own families so much (I am guilty as well) that we all have forgotten that kindness, morality, decency, are virtues we used to possess and no longer seem to have in our blood. Survival is indeed in our nature, however, compassion and kindness CAN be contagious as well if we allow ourselves that blessed trait... If this is overcome, I, personally aim to treat myself to a makeover of my heart.. I have noticed my negativity and my sadistic nature rubs off on others.. I don't want to be a part of such a selfish world, which could be a reason for the disaster in the first place. Humanity has a basic need for survival, however, the quality of life would improve a million times if only we instilled in ourselves a need for compassion as well... If this comment offends anyone, by all means delete it, however, I urge you all to analyze yourselves on your own and ask yourselves, "what have I done, personally, to deserve any of the riches of life in the first place?" If any of the answers don't involve kindness, compassion, or a sense of decency toward others, maybe it's time to rethink the question. I am by no means innocent in the matter, just the opposite as a matter of fact. This newly found fear of what is happening is what has awakened in me this desire to share this thought. Please don't mistake this post for a sense of arrogance, I am simply aiming to create a more enlightening thought on the matter. I also have a bad way of wording things, and if someone else might be able to reword it so that others can understand, please do... I just hope someone understands what I'm trying to say.. I live in a town in which it seems as though every person thrives on being corrupt, deceitful, angry, and insidiously hurtful toward others. I have also noticed that an inner peace brings about kindness, joy, and an actual love for others... If you have the need to bash what I have to say, all I can say is that if one person might be affected by these words, then I have accomplished one thing today...

    August 5, 2014 at 1:44 am | Reply
  11. Waynetta

    I suggest we all start praying, let God save us. Ignore those science nuts, please. I'll start now.

    August 7, 2014 at 6:47 am | Reply
  12. Dupedta

    Way to think positively Gupta !!

    August 7, 2014 at 6:55 am | Reply
  13. European

    I don't understand your panic... you live in a country where every lunatic can buy automatic guns and you are afraid about to patients under very strict observation.

    Isn't it the American way to "never leave one" of your guys? Of course, this is not one of your beloved soldiers you like to send everywhere, but this is one of your folk who helped people to survive!

    The spanish people demonstrated for their citizen to be brought back...

    August 7, 2014 at 8:52 am | Reply
  14. gary

    No one Knows what tomorrow will bring. We all have to be at peace with our decisions we make. So if we let the virus be spread around the world by Ourselves............Shame on us..................Just remember you did it yourselves.................
    Have a good day

    August 7, 2014 at 9:30 am | Reply
  15. gary

    No one knows what tomorrow will bring. But if we allow the governments to import Ebola, here now in Spain,we have did it ourselves. So if your comfortable with that God have mercy on us all. Do not be upset when it comes knocking at your door.................... Sleep good

    August 7, 2014 at 9:44 am | Reply
  16. Soma Duda

    Because you keep picking up infected people to come home FFS idiots

    August 7, 2014 at 9:58 am | Reply
  17. odious not

    How does the cold affect the virus? Perhaps North is the direction of choice for once... The andes, the alps, iceland!

    August 7, 2014 at 10:00 am | Reply
  18. GiftEconomy

    EBOLA could go global because the World Health Organisation, the governments and medical organisation DO NOTHING FOR PREVENT the spreading of the deadly virus

    August 7, 2014 at 10:58 am | Reply
  19. Nasdaq7

    OK, the US, EU, UK wants to save money? Not spend much on this problem. OK.

    August 7, 2014 at 11:40 am | Reply
  20. ivan e. ivanov

    There are basic principles in this area. Like discovery of Eduard Djener, Gaston Ramon, Robert Koh, Lister, Pasteur and many others(vaccine, serums, interferons etc.). This is from medical point of view. The geopolitical and economics priority is another things. The world propaganda must calculate all these maters. Thanks.

    August 7, 2014 at 11:51 am | Reply
  21. Grantor/Selltor

    The United States gave it to the first aid works that went over there to help them. U.S. Owns EBOLA 'Patent.

    August 8, 2014 at 12:01 am | Reply
  22. chri§§y

    @ Aileen, that was an awesome post! Thank you! I wish more people would look for the positive in life like you did! Bless you girl!

    August 8, 2014 at 12:22 am | Reply
  23. Bad Santa

    If one gives such statements on TV, then there is a choice of him either being a total nutcase, or someone must have told him what's going to happen. Pick one. Just my two cents.

    August 8, 2014 at 2:27 am | Reply
  24. Fred

    So you have all these people around the world killing their immune system carrying around a battery "all day long," aka, cell phones, lithium.
    Cell phone addicts carry and spread disease: exactly like pig.pen in Charlie Brown cartoons.

    Keep away from those having relations with beasts who are spreading fleas, ticks, parasites, lyme disease and e.coli.

    Keep away from those addicted to cell phones. They are death, disease and plague.

    August 8, 2014 at 12:53 pm | Reply
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