As most of you are aware, the first Ebola case was reported in Texas Tuesday September 30. Thomas Duncan had gone to a Dallas hospital after showing symptoms several days after he arrived in the United States from Liberia. The hospital initially sent the Duncan home with some antibiotics despite information that he had recently visited West Africa.
Duncan has since then been put into isolation and close relatives and anyone else who has been exposed to the patient is under close surveillance until Oct. 19. It takes 21 days for symptoms to emerge and until then, these people are not allowed to leave their homes in order to prevent a spread of the disease.
When news of Ebola reaching the U.S. surfaced, naturally people began to panic that the there would be an outbreak however, the CDC (Center for Disease Control) and government officials have assured that the likelihood of there being an outbreak is slim to none. To prevent any further confusion or worry, this is why we should not be concerned about an outbreak:
The patient flew from Liberia to Dallas but fellow passengers were not at risk of contracting the virus because, it can only be contracted through direct contact with the bodily fluids (urine, saliva, feces, vomit, and semen) of someone who is actively sick meaning presently showing symptoms at the time.
Ebola is not like a cold or the flu. It cannot be contracted through the air and it cannot be spread before symptoms show.
Other Ebola patients cannot be brought to the U.S. because airport officials in Liberia, Sierra Leone, Guinea, and Nigeria screen every person getting on a plane for fever. (After landing, passengers are screened again.)
The people who came in contact with the infected patient are being closely monitored and if symptoms show, will promptly be isolated.
The U.S. has the resources to properly contain the disease and proper equipment for effective isolation.
So, while many panicked about Ebola being in the U.S., there is little concern about an outbreak. As long as the necessary precautions are taken and standards are followed, the disease should not spread any further. For more information about Ebola you can visit www.cdc.gov.