I've heard that one vector for the spread of Ebola is ceremonial contact that family members have with the body of their deceased relative. That led me to think about how Judaism deals with this issue. The tahara (purification) process has volunteers, who aren't medical professionals, working with the body.
Now, I'm certain that the principle of pikuach nefesh would preculde any tahara activities that would endanger the lives of the volunteers involved. I'm wondering how this is implemented in practice and whether it's addressed explicitly in the literature.
Do people participating in a tahara take special precautions if the deceased had an infectious disease?
Are there situations in which a tahara is simply not performed for this reason?
Are these concerns dealt with in the Halachic literature?