The U.S. Centers for Disease Control confirmed on Wednesday that a second Dallas health-care worker has tested positive for Ebola. The CDC is also asking asking 132 passengers and crew who flew with her on a Frontier Airlines Flight #1143 from Cleveland to Dallas on Monday to contact the agency as soon as possible.
Sounding clearly annoyed, CDC Director Dr. Thomas Frieden noted that the newly infected patient “should not have traveled on a commercial flight” or traveled at all in public because she had had contact with an Ebola patient at her hospital and her temperature was a just above normal 99.5 degrees when she boarded Monday’s flight from Cleveland.
Of note, although passengers and crew who traveled on the flight with her have been asked to contact CDC for monitoring, Frieden emphasized that the risk of the woman having infected another person on the flight is “extremely low.” Ebola can can only be transmitted through bodily fluids of sufferers when they are showing symptoms of the disease.
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Further details on second Dallas Ebola patient
The new Dallas Ebola patient will be taken to Emory University hospital in Atlanta later Wednesday afternoon “as a result of a clinical decision,” according to U.S. Health and Human Services Secretary Sylvia Matthews Burwell. Emory Hospital cared for two prior Ebola patients, and both recovered.
Health officials noted they are also monitoring three people the new patient had contact with before she was isolated Tuesday.
Kent State University reported that the newly diagnosed woman has relatives who work at there, but she did not visit the campus during her recent trip to her family home in Summit County, Ohio.
However, Kent State’s director of health services, Dr. Angela DeJulius, said, “Out of an abundance of caution, we’re asking the patient’s family members to remain off campus for the next 21 days and self-monitor per CDC protocol.”
CDC Director Frieden noted the three people who had contact with the infected woman, nor more than 120 others who had contact with Duncan will be allowed to travel on commercial flights or public transportation until they have definitely passed the incubation period for the Ebola virus.
White House meeting planned
In a related note, President Obama canceled a planned election-season trip to the east coast Wednesday. Administration officials said he will instead hold an afternoon briefing at the White House with the various agencies coordinating the government’s Ebola response.
Health officials warned that more cases of Ebola at the Dallas hospital where the now-infectedwoman worked are “a very real possibility.”
“We have contingencies for more,” Dallas County Judge Clay Jenkins explained during a Wednesday briefing.