London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine
Responding to the Ebola crisis
During 2014, a significant Ebola outbreak was raging through Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone. The London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, as one of the world’s leaders in research and postgraduate education in infectious diseases, played a leading role in combatting this outbreak and introducing preventive measures.
Some 500 academic and professional staff were deployed on a voluntary basis through a range of relief organisations, both in-country and in the UK, to advise governments and international agencies. Staff and students carried out mathematical modelling, planning, education programmes and accelerated clinical trials in the field including an EBOVAS trial in Sierra Leone and the design of an innovative ‘ring vaccination’ concept for the rVSV-ZEBOV vaccine in Guinea.
The School established an Ebola Response Anthropology Platform to help health workers develop culturally sensitive interventions, as well as providing free online education programmes to combat the spread of the disease. Tens of thousands of people in the affected countries have been reached through the actions of the School and new approaches put in place to deal with future occurrence.