Bitcoin’s Role in the Battle Against Ebola

As the Ebola outbreak continues to spread many want to know what to do to help. One such community is the Bitcoin community.

The nations in which the effects of Ebola have been most disruptive are those at the lower end of the global GDP rankings. Sierra Leone, for example, reports that the attempts to contain the disease in spite of the nation’s poor healthcare infrastructure has been detrimental to the economy as a whole. The wholesaler and retailer sectors have been especially damaged, reporting a reduction in turnover by 50-75 percent. Projected growth across West Africa has been cut in half.

The Sierra Leone Liberty Group has dedicated their focus to the destruction caused by Ebola “beyond the immediate loss of life.” Where Bitcoin comes in is its ability to transfer funds to the areas that need it most quickly and without hefty charges.

Many Bitcoin enthusiasts argue the currency is leading the way to allow access to financial services a human right. For this reason, the use of the currency to get financial support to Ebola-stricken nations has more potential than schemes to make cryptocurrency more prominent in West Africa. As Luzius Meisser of Switzerland’s Bitcoin foundation said in s statement to InsideBitcoins,

Ebola needs to be fought with proper hygiene, not crypto currencies.”

On that note, NGO Doctors Without Boarders has initiated a new campaign through an affiliated organization called “A Day Without Touch,” meant to collect funds for the outbreak. The challenge itself involves asking friends and family to make a donation on your donation page through the website without making contact, determined by a flip of a coin determining heads (no contact) or tails (contact). The donations are then given using virtual currency.

 

Read more here- “Can Bitcoin Help Battle Ebola?” (Ian Jackson, InsideBitcoin)

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Olivia is a graduate of Villanova University where she studied Economics and History, minoring in Gender and Women's Studies. She also has experience working with federal legislatures on health care policy, women's issues, and Internet safety.

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