Balancing Burial Rituals with Public Health Demands During the 2014 Guinean Ebola Epidemic
This SSHAP Case Study explains how an anthropologist negotiated a medically safe burial for a pregnant woman who had died of Ebola Virus Disease (EVD) in a Kissi community at the beginning of the 2014 Ebola epidemic in Guinea. The epidemiological protocol to organise a safe burial for a deceased pregnant woman with suspected EVD clashed with the local community’s need for a ritual burial following a post-mortem caesarean. A tense stand-off occurred. According to Kissi culture, when a pregnant woman dies the foetus should be removed before burial, to avoid a curse on the community.