The first Ebola case diagnosed in USA was confirmed in one man that traveled recently from Liberia to Dallas. Both US citizens and West African community members are now afraid and caution becomes necessary to prevent virus spread.
The ill patient was not identified and an official statement by federal health officers declared he was critically ill and isolated at the Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital. Age and nationality were also not revealed.
Authorities are currently tracking down the friends, family and other people that came into contact with the patient as they are at risk. No other cases are suspected in Texas at the moment.
According to Tom Fieden, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Director, the patient left Liberia on September 19th and arrived to visit relatives. He started to feel ill around 5 days later. It is not known how the infection happened. He stated:
“I have no doubt that we’ll stop this in its tracks in the U.S. But I also have no doubt that – as long as the outbreak continues in Africa – we need to be on our guard. But there is no doubt in my mind that we will stop it here.”
The Liberian Community Association of Dallas-Forth Worth president, Stanley Gaye, declared that the North Texas Liberian population (around 10,000 people) is skeptical of the assurances made by the CDC. He added:
“We’ve been telling people to try to stay away from social gatherings. We need to know who it is so that they (family members) can all go get tested. If they are aware, they should let us know.”
The good news is that the prospects are good. 4 US aid workers did become infected and were flown to US for treatment. 3 of them already recovered and the fourth is under observation at the moment.
Although there are just 4 isolation units present in the US, according to Frieden, the patient does not have to be moved as any hospital in the country can offer proper infection control and care.
The current diagnosis was confirmed by both CDC and Texas health officials in separate tests. The condition of the man is currently described as serious. Experimental treatments are currently discussed.