WHO just made a historic declaration about the status of Ebola in Guinea.

Meet Noubia, the adorable little cutie in the photo below.

Photo by Cellou Binani/AFP/Getty Images.


She was just 34 days old when this picture was snapped back in November 2015, so she probably won't be able to recall all the hoopla over this photo when she grows up. But the picture, nonetheless, will go down in history.

Why? The photo captures the exact moment when Noubia, the last known patient to contract Ebola in Guinea, was released from care after being treated for the deadly disease.

Noubia's prognosis last month means her home country has officially turned a very big corner in the fight against Ebola.

Guinea was declared Ebola-free by the World Health Organization on Dec. 29, 2015.

Two 21-day incubation periods have passed since the last known patient — in Guinea's case, Noubia — has tested negative for Ebola a second time, according to the World Health Organization.

This is a big deal — not just for Guinea, but for all of West Africa. It's the first time the three hardest hit countries — Guinea, Liberia, and Sierra Leone — "have stopped the original chains of transmission that were responsible for starting this devastating outbreak two years ago,” Dr. Matshidiso Moeti, WHO Regional Director for Africa, said in a statement.

Photo by Cellou Binani/AFP/Getty Images.

Guineans are preparing to celebrate the declaration and ring in 2016 with fireworks and concerts, BBC News reported.

"It's the best year-end present that God could give to Guinea, and the best news that Guineans could hope for," Alama Kambou Dore, an Ebola survivor, told AFP News agency.

The celebrations come after two years of immeasurable heartache in Guinea.

The virus has ravaged West Africa since the chain of infections began in December 2013, causing about 11,300 deaths worldwide.

More than 2,500 of them have been in Guinea.

An Ebola patient sits at a treatment center in Guinea in 2014. Photo by Kenzo Tribouillard/AFP/Getty Images.

While the WHO's declaration of an Ebola-free Guinea is more than welcome, it certainly doesn't mean the country can let down its guard just yet. In fact, Guinea now enters a three-month period of heightened surveillance to make sure any new cases are quickly identified and treated immediately before spreading to other patients.

"The coming months will be absolutely critical," said Dr. Bruce Aylward of WHO's Ebola response team. "This is the period when the countries need to be sure that they are fully prepared to prevent, detect and respond to any new cases."

Liberia, for instance, was declared Ebola-free back in September, but has had two cases crop up since then.

But for now, Guineans have every reason to celebrate.

The coming year will bring a "full health sector recovery agenda" to Guinea, Liberia, and Sierra Leone, the WHO reports, noting that they'll focus mostly on vital public programs, like maternal and child health, and on pinpointing any Ebola flare-ups down the road.

You are just the cutest, Noubia. Photo by Cellou Binani/AFP/Getty Images.

Dr. Rick Brennan, a member of WHO's Ebola response team, told The New York Times that the declaration serves as a great moment to build on the significant progress that's been made.

“It’s important to take a pause and be thankful for where we’ve arrived at and get to work rebuilding that health system and making it more resilient for the future."

Courtesy of FIELDTRIP
True

The COVID-19 pandemic has disproportionately affected diverse communities due largely in part to social factors such as inadequate access to housing, income, dietary options, education and employment — all of which have been shown to affect people's physical health.

Recognizing that inequity, Harlem-based chef JJ Johnson sought out to help his community maximize its health during the pandemic — one grain at a time.

Johnson manages FIELDTRIP, a health-focused restaurant that strives to bring people together through the celebration of rice, a grain found in cuisines of countless cultures.

"It was very important for me to show the world that places like Harlem want access to more health-conscious foods," Johnson said. "The people who live in Harlem should have the option to eat fresh, locally farmed and delicious food that other communities have access to."

Lack of education and access to those healthy food options is a primary driver of why 31% of adults in Harlem are struggling with obesity — the highest rate of any neighborhood in New York City and 7% higher than the average adult obesity rate across the five boroughs.

Obesity increases risk for heart disease or diabetes, which in turn leaves Harlem's residents — who are 76% Black or LatinX — at heightened risk for complications with COVID-19.

Keep Reading Show less
via KrustyKhajiit / YouTube

Thomas F. Wilson played one of the most recognizable villains in film history, Biff Tannen, in the "Back to the Future" series. So, understandably, he gets recognized wherever he goes for the iconic role.

The attention must be nice, but it has to get exhausting answering the same questions day in and day out about the films. So Wilson created a card that he carries with him to hand out to people that answers all the questions he gets asked on a daily basis.

Keep Reading Show less
Courtesy of FIELDTRIP
True

The COVID-19 pandemic has disproportionately affected diverse communities due largely in part to social factors such as inadequate access to housing, income, dietary options, education and employment — all of which have been shown to affect people's physical health.

Recognizing that inequity, Harlem-based chef JJ Johnson sought out to help his community maximize its health during the pandemic — one grain at a time.

Johnson manages FIELDTRIP, a health-focused restaurant that strives to bring people together through the celebration of rice, a grain found in cuisines of countless cultures.

"It was very important for me to show the world that places like Harlem want access to more health-conscious foods," Johnson said. "The people who live in Harlem should have the option to eat fresh, locally farmed and delicious food that other communities have access to."

Lack of education and access to those healthy food options is a primary driver of why 31% of adults in Harlem are struggling with obesity — the highest rate of any neighborhood in New York City and 7% higher than the average adult obesity rate across the five boroughs.

Obesity increases risk for heart disease or diabetes, which in turn leaves Harlem's residents — who are 76% Black or LatinX — at heightened risk for complications with COVID-19.

Keep Reading Show less

Sometimes a politician says or does something so brazenly gross that you have to do a double take to make sure it really happened. Take, for instance, this tweet from Lauren Witzke, a GOP candidate for the U.S. Senate from Delaware. Witzke defeated the party's endorsed candidate to win the primary, has been photographed in a QAnon t-shirt, supports the conspiracy theory that 9/11 was a U.S. government inside operation, and has called herself a flat earther.

So that's neat.

Witzke has also proposed a 10-year total halt on immigration to the U.S., which is absurd on its face, but makes sense when you see what she believes about immigrants. In a tweet this week, Witzke wrote, "Most third-world migrants can not assimilate into civil societies. Prove me wrong."

First, let's talk about how "civil societies" and developing nations are not different things, and to imply that they are is racist, xenophobic, and wrong. Not to mention, it has never been a thing to refer people using terms like "third-world." That's a somewhat outdated term for developing nations, and it was never an adjective to describe people from those nations even when it was in use.

Next, let's see how Twitter thwapped Lauren Witzke straight into the 21st century by proving her wrong in the most delicious way. Not only did people share how they or their relatives and friends have successfully "assimilated," but many showed that they went way, way beyond that.

Keep Reading Show less
via WatchMojo / YouTube

There are two conflicting viewpoints when it comes to addressing culture from that past that contains offensive elements that would never be acceptable today.

Some believe that old films, TV shows, music or books with out-of-date, offensive elements should be hidden from public view. While others think they should be used as valuable tools that help us learn from the past.

Keep Reading Show less