Comprehensive Clinical Care for Infants and Children with Ebola Virus Disease
The 2013–2015 West African Ebola outbreak was by far the largest outbreak the world has ever faced. Ebola Treatment Units were set up throughout the three affected countries to care for suspected and confirmed cases of Ebola; among the most challenging patients cared for were children, who despite the best care available often had mortality rates far higher than healthy young adults. In addition to Liberia and Guinea, Sierra Leone also suffered immensely during the outbreak. Here we present the key elements for the care of children, grounded in the principles of pediatric critical care, balanced by our own experiences in Sierra Leone in 2014–2015, and informed by the peer-reviewed medical literature. These guidelines will need to be updated as further evidence and technologies become available should they be needed to care for children again in a future ETU, but they demonstrate the complexities and difficulties in providing theoretically simple yet practically complex care under austere conditions.
KeywordsAntibiotics Children Infants Critical care Clinical care Diagnosis Ebola Fluids Nutrition Pediatrics Treatment West African Ebola epidemic Ebola treatment units Ebola virus disease Clinical recommendations
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