Biodefense Expert: Not Banning Flights 'Setting Ourselves Up to Do Harm'

Biodefense Expert: Not Banning Flights 'Setting Ourselves Up to Do Harm'

Dr. Charles Bailey, Executive Director of George Mason University’s National Center of Biodefense and Infectious Diseases, argued that the United States was “setting itself up to do harm” by not restricting flights from West Africa on Wednesday’s “Laura Ingraham Show.”

At the end of the interview, Bailey said, “I would have banned anyone coming from West Africa long ago…I think it’s kind of ridiculous to come on the air and make a statement that ‘first do no harm is the reason why we don’t restrict air travel out of West Africa.’ In my mind, we’re actually setting ourselves up to do harm if we allow those people to enter this country.”  

On Tuesday, CDC Director Tom Frieden argued the United States should “do no harm” and not ban flights from West Africa.  

He added that he would be “concerned” if nurse Amber Vinson was coughing or sneezing on the flight she took before she was diagnosed with the Ebola virus.

Bailey also stated, “It’s absolutely ridiculous to say that Ebola virus is not highly infectious, anyone in their right mind would not say things like that.  We know for a fact in the laboratory even a single virus particle is enough to establish an infection in primates…and you have literally billions and billions of virus particles circulating in the bloodstream of these infected individuals.” And that “one of the biggest problems that we face is that these people are put into the hospital settings ill, and the healthcare workers are not properly trained in order to take care of patients infected with Ebola.”

Follow Ian Hanchett on Twitter @IanHanchett


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