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Lassa fever in post-conflict Sierra Leone

This resource presents observations of case fatality rates of Lassa fever in Sierra Leone after the civil war and compared to studies completed prior to the conflict. Peak presentation of Lassa fever cases occurs in the dry season, which is consistent with previous studies. This paper's studies also confirmed reports conducted prior to the civil war that indicate that infants, children, young adults, and pregnant women are disproportionately impacted by Lassa fever.

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Lassa fever: The politics of an emerging disease and the scope for One Health

As a rodent borne virus, Lassa fever is of particular interest from a One Health perspective. The interplay between security, public health and One Health approaches are explored through ethnographic and interview based research in Kenema, Sierra Leone, a long-term treatment and research hub. ‘Biodefence dollars’ have provided the majority of recent funding in Sierra Leone and have created opportunities for both local and international actors to address a neglected disease.

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Culture and politics: The anthropology of an emerging disease

This book explores how indigenous people cope with the Ebola virus, addresses political, structural, psychological, and cultural factors, along with conventional intervention protocols as problematic to achieving medical objectives. It also aims to shed new light on a continuing debate about the motivation for human behavior by showing how local responses to epidemics are rooted both in culture and in human nature.

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Emerging disease or emerging diagnosis?: Lassa fever and Ebola in Sierra Leone

This article looks beyond Ebola in 2014 to the history of efforts to control VHFs in the Mano River and challenges the idea that there was a vacuum of knowledge. Highlighted instead are politics of knowledge which have run through global health and which have prioritized particular forms of knowledge and ways of dealing with disease. Ethnographic research on the emergence of Lassa and the subsequent emergence of Ebola in West Africa is presented, focusing on the development of technologies and institutions to detect and manage both viruses.

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Governing epidemics in an age of complexity: Narratives, politics and pathways to sustainability, global environmental change

This paper elaborates a ‘pathways approach’ to addressing the governance challenges posed by the dynamics of complex, coupled, multi-scale systems, while incorporating explicit concern for equity, social justice and the well-being of poor and marginalised groups.

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Haemorrhagic fevers: Narratives, politics and pathways. In Epidemics: Science, governance and social justice

This article discusses four main narratives about haemorrhagic fevers in global health discourse that shape international response: "A global threat: tackling the emerging plague out-of-Africa", "Deadly local disease events: the building of universal rapid response", "Culture and context: building positively on local knowledge", and "Mysteries and mobility: taking long-term ecological and social dynamics seriously". The article shows how each of these narratives are view haemorrhagic fevers in different ways. These are promoted and adhered to by particular actors and institutions by drawing on different forms of knowledge and ‘cultural models’ of disease. This has implications for the ways priorities for response are established, and the kinds of resources that are made available to fight disease.

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Epidemics: Science, governance, and social justice

This book focuses on how different policy-makers, scientists, and local populations construct alternative narratives-accounts of the causes and appropriate responses to outbreaks- about epidemics at the global, national and local level. The contrast between emergency-oriented, top-down responses to what are perceived as potentially global outbreaks and longer-term approaches to diseases, such as AIDS, which may now be considered endemic, is highlighted.

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