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Home News NMDOH Working with CDC to Rule Out Ebola in Patient (Update)
Kenny Vigil
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NMDOH Working with CDC to Rule Out Ebola in Patient (Update)

August 18, 2014 - Ebola Virus Disease - Disease

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Blood samples from a UNM Hospital patient are scheduled to be sent to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention by the end of the day for testing to rule out Ebola. The testing is being done out of an abundance of caution. The Department expects to have test results back by the end of the week from the CDC. The 30-year-old Bernalillo County woman showed up at UNM Hospital with sore throat, headache, muscle aches and reported having a fever.

The woman is in isolation and is in stable condition. UNM Hospital is working with the Department of Health, the CDC and following its own protocols to ensure other patients, visitors and health care workers are safe.

“People who have to go to UNM Hospital, should keep their appointments and go there with full confidence that they will be safe,” said Department of Health Secretary Retta Ward.

The woman had been in Sierra Leone, Africa, and left there earlier this month. Sierra Leone is one of several countries in West Africa with known cases of Ebola. The woman was teaching in Sierra Leone, and had no known exposures to Ebola. At this time the patient is not a probable case, but a person under investigation with no known exposures.

According to the CDC, Ebola poses no substantial risk to the US general population. A person infected with Ebola virus is not contagious until symptoms appear. The virus is spread through direct contact (through broken skin or mucous membranes) with the body fluids (blood, urine, feces, saliva, and other secretions) of a person who is sick with Ebola. Ebola is not spread through the air or by food or water.

As of August 13, no confirmed Ebola cases have been reported in the United States, other than the two US health workers evacuated from Liberia.

The Department will provide updates when the test results are back, if the woman’s condition changes, or if there is a new development in the investigation.

For more information visit the CDC Ebola Virus Disease page.

See Also

August 21, 2014 - Test Results Show UNM Hospital Patient Does Not Have Ebola

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El Departamento de Salud de NM Trabaja con CDC Para Descartar Ébola en una Paciente (Actualización)