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Tackling Ebola in 2015: Better PR is Needed to Help Manage Crisis

By Debra Zimmerman Murphey

I have both a professional and personal interest in the Ebola crisis. As someone with journalism and healthcare public relations (PR) experience – and as the daughter of a career foreign service officer who lived in Western Africa – I’ve watched as the world has cumulatively crawled toward a response.

When I was a year old, my family moved to Nigeria and lived outside Lagos. It was the 1960s and my father’s first tour with the State Department. During that time, taking an antimalarial medication was a routine part of our lives. We also lived in Nigeria when the Biafran War began. As a child, I had no way of knowing that the latter would end up being one of numerous conflicts, not including many public-health challenges, that would plague the world’s second-largest continent.

Now, decades later, I am mindful that the thousands of Ebola victims in Western Africa, and the comparably few in America, crystallize that there are times when mankind should think globally, act locally, and speak with one compassionate voice.

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