What’s Happened So Far
In March 2014, the World Health Organization (WHO) reported an outbreak of Ebola virus disease in the West African country of Guinea. Additional cases have since been reported in the countries of Liberia and Sierra Leone, as well as Nigeria and Senegal. The cases reported in Nigeria and Senegal are considered to be contained, with no further spread in these countries, but new cases continue to be reported from Guinea, Liberia, and Sierra Leone. To date, there have been more than 9,200 reported Ebola cases in West Africa, with more than 4,500 deaths.
In September 2014, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reported the first laboratory-confirmed case of Ebola diagnosed in the United States, in a person who had traveled from Liberia to Dallas, Texas. The patient passed away on October 8, 2014. Two health care workers at Texas Presbyterian Hospital who provided care for the patient has also tested positive for Ebola, and have since been isolated and are receiving care.
What We’re Doing at Home
Clinicians in the United States have been key to our safety here at home by:
Identifying patients with both a history of travel from West Africa or contact with someone with a confirmed case of Ebola and symptoms indicating they might have Ebola
Immediately isolating these patients
Consulting their local or state health departments
Getting these patients tested as needed
The CDC issued more thorough guidance and step-by-step instructions on how to use personal protective equipment safely:
All healthcare workers undergo rigorous training and are practiced and competent with personal protective equipment, including putting it on and taking it off in a systematic manner
There can be no skin exposure when personal protective equipment is worn
All workers are supervised by a trained monitor who watches each worker taking personal protective equipment on and off
Read more about the guidance on personal protective equipment here.
We have also been responding to new information to adapt and enhance our response. The following five U.S. airports — which will now receive nearly all travelers coming to the United States from countries affected by the Ebola outbreak — are also implementing new Ebola screening measures to help stop the spread of the disease:
John F. Kennedy International Airport - New York, NY
Washington Dulles International Airport - Washington, D.C.
Newark Liberty International Airport - Newark, NJ
Chicago O'Hare International Airport - Chicago, IL
Jackson Atlanta International