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Update, September 30, 6:15 PM EDT: According to officials from the Centers for Disease Control, the patient, a male, arrived in the United States from Liberia on September 20. He planned to visit with family members in Texas. He initially sought treatment at a hospital on September 26 but was sent home, and then was readmitted on September 28. Texas public health officials believe that the patient had contact with “a handful” of people while he was infectious, including family members. The officials are currently in the process of tracing those contacts. CDC officials do not believe that anyone on the flight with him has any risk of contracting Ebola.
During a press conference, CDC officials reiterated that Ebola is not transmitted through the air, nor is it possible to catch it from someone who has been exposed but is not yet displaying symptoms.
“Ebola is a scary disease,” said CDC’s Dr. Thomas Frieden. “At the same time, we are stopping it in its tracks in this country.”
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has confirmed a case of Ebola in Dallas. While other patients have been flown back to the United States for treatment, this is the first time that a patient has been diagnosed stateside.
More MoJo coverage of the Ebola crisis.
The patient is being kept in “strict isolation” at Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital. While hospital officials are not currently discussing which countries the patient has visited, no doubt US officials will be looking very closely at where he’s traveled in the recent past, especially within the United States. The CDC will be holding a press conference on this at 5:30 p.m. Eastern. You can see it live here.
Ebola has already infected more than 6,000 people—and killed more than 3,000—in West Africa. Quick action prevented the disease from spreading in Senegal and Nigeria, but the disease continues to wreak havoc in Liberia, Sierra Leone, and Guinea.