"Ebola got a head start on us," Anthony Banbury, head of the UN Mission for Ebola Emergency Response, told the United Nations Security Council by remote link from Ghana Tuesday.
"It is far ahead of us, it is running faster than us, and it is winning the race," he said. "We either stop Ebola now or we face an entirely unprecedented situation for which we do not have a plan."
The World Health Organization said Tuesday the infection rate could reach 10,000 a week in a worst-case scenario.
Comment: in fact, that is NOT a worst case scenario. The worst case scenario is unmanageable case loads materializing in multiple regions of the world, with attendant civil disorder and break-down of nation-states.
We are witnessing how the United States bungled ONE index case in Dallas, even though there was plenty of time to work out and implement adequate protocols for treating patients and those suspected of harboring the virus.
It is for this reason that I support President Obama taking the Ebola problem directly to a war-time footing like FDR did after Pearl Harbor, redirecting US industry to the production of bombers and tanks and ships. This war is against an invisible enemy and requires President Obama to recruit the single industry with the capacity to respond: Big Pharma.
We will get some indication tomorrow, if President Obama is ready for his FDR moment, when he meets with world leaders on the Ebola threat. He should urge all-hands-on-deck from private industry to develop cures and an effective vaccine against the disease now, including the re-direction of Big Pharma's research, development, testing and manufacturing capacities.