Texas A&M Law Review

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From its relative obscurity over the past three decades, Ebola viral disease (“EVD”) emerged as a substantial global biothreat in 2014 and 2015. The current outbreak of varied strains of Ebola, beginning in March 2014 in Guinea, is projected to impact hundreds of thousands of people over months, years, or even indefinitely. As of October 31, 2014, the spread of EVD was concentrated in several Af- rican countries (e.g., Sierra Leone, Liberia, Guinea, and an unrelated outbreak in Democratic Republic of Congo), with limited additional cases in Nigeria, Senegal, and Mali. Over 2,700 people are known to have died from Ebola in fewer than eight months in Liberia alone; the actual death toll may be far higher. At one point, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (“CDC”) estimated a worst-case scenario of 1.4 million new cases arising largely in already affected countries by early 2015. Reported cases in the affected regions are considerably less than these estimates, but with a fatality rate hovering near 50%, thousands more West Africans may perish before the end of this current outbreak.

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