By now you've probably heard of Ebola as the 2014 outbreak in West Africa is the largest in history. The deadly virus is passed through bodily fluids, and there's no easy cure for it. So the key for healthcare workers and others who may come in with it is protecting themselves.
A new product may make that process much easier.
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Zylast, a non-alcohol sanitizer made by California-based company, Innovative BioDefense (IBD), was one of three winners in the recent USAID Fighting Ebola Grand Challenge, a search for technologies with potential to stop the spread of Ebola.
Zylast actually kills the Ebola virus, and, according to IBD, tests have shown that if a healthcare worker comes into with an Ebola-infected person—even one who has not been diagnosed—Zylast will provide that worker with six hours of protection against infection.
Currently, Zylast is in use in several US hospitals that may encounter Ebola, says IBD CEO, Dr. Colette Cozean. It has also recently received tens of millions of dollars of orders from relief organizations such as UNICEF and from the Department of Defense. And the government of Liberia is working to bring it to their country, says Dr. Cozean.
For a disease that is so deadly and so easily passed through bodily fluids, this could be revolutionary.
Photo courtesy Debbie Eisenhut