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Computational and Mathematical Methods in Medicine
Volume 2015, Article ID 736507, 9 pages
Research Article

Tactics and Strategies for Managing Ebola Outbreaks and the Salience of Immunization

1Department of Environmental Science, Policy, and Management, University of California, Berkeley, CA 94720, USA
2School of Mathematical Sciences, University of KwaZulu-Natal, Private Bag X54001, Durban 4000, South Africa
3Metabiota, Inc., 1 Sutter Street, Suite 600, San Francisco, CA 94104, USA
4Computer Science Department, Oberlin College, Oberlin, OH 44074, USA
5Metabiota, Inc., 24 Main Motor Road, Congo Cross, Freetown, Sierra Leone
6Metabiota Inc., Kenema Government Hospital, Kenema, Sierra Leone
7Directorate of Disease Prevention and Control, DPC Ministry of Health and Sanitation, Freetown, Sierra Leone
8Sorbonne Université, UPMC, Université de Paris 06, CR7, CIMI-Paris, 75005 Paris, France

Received 2 December 2014; Revised 9 January 2015; Accepted 12 January 2015

Academic Editor: Chung-Min Liao

Copyright © 2015 Wayne M. Getz et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


We present a stochastic transmission chain simulation model for Ebola viral disease (EVD) in West Africa, with the salutary result that the virus may be more controllable than previously suspected. The ongoing tactics to detect cases as rapidly as possible and isolate individuals as safely as practicable is essential to saving lives in the current outbreaks in Guinea, Liberia, and Sierra Leone. Equally important are educational campaigns that reduce contact rates between susceptible and infectious individuals in the community once an outbreak occurs. However, due to the relatively low of Ebola (around 1.5 to 2.5 next generation cases are produced per current generation case in naïve populations), rapid isolation of infectious individuals proves to be highly efficacious in containing outbreaks in new areas, while vaccination programs, even with low efficacy vaccines, can be decisive in curbing future outbreaks in areas where the Ebola virus is maintained in reservoir populations.