Monday, January 5, 2015

Patient Exposed To Ebola Hospitalized In Omaha


An American health worker exposed to the Ebola virus while working in Sierra Leone arrived in Omaha Sunday afternoon and is now being monitored at Nebraska Medicine.
Paramedics wearing full-body protective gear took the patient, who has not been identified, by ambulance from a plane that arrived at Eppley Airfield around 1:45 p.m. to the hospital, which has a specialized biocontainment unit.

Ebola arrival

"I can't comment on if the patient does or doesn't have any kind of symptoms at this point, but I can say the crew inside the biocontainment unit, the crew that received the patient at the airport, is treating this patient as if he or she does have the virus, just out of an abundance of caution," said Nebraska Medicine spokesman Taylor Wilson.
“This patient has been exposed to the virus, but is not ill and is not contagious,” said Dr. Phil Smith, medical director of the biocontainment unit. “However, we will be taking all appropriate precautions. This patient will be under observation in the same room used for treatment of the first three patients and will be carefully monitored to see if Ebola disease develops.”
Dr. Smith said the same team that cared for the previous Ebola patients will treat this patient, who will be observed and monitored for 21 days, which is the incubation period of the Ebola virus. The patient's condition will be monitored for symptoms and through blood tests.
To date, three patients with Ebola have been treated at Nebraska Medicine. Dr. Richard Sacra was treated and released in September, NBC cameraman Ashoka Mukpo was treated and released in October and Dr. Martin Salia, who passed away from the virus after less than two days of treatment in November.
The World Health Organization says more than 8,000 people have died from the Ebola outbreak in West Africa that began about a year ago.


No comments: