Safety

CDC: U.S. hospitals have had 68 Ebola scares

Hospital Safety Insider, August 21, 2014

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Hospitals in the U.S. have dealt with Ebola scares at least 68 times over the last three weeks, according to a report from ABC News.

The CDC has fielded reports from hospitals in 27 states amidst the recent outbreak of Ebola in African nations out of an abundance of caution, the report said. Fifty-eight of the cases were deemed false alarms, but blood samples for the remaining 10 were sent to the CDC for testing. Of those, seven of the samples tested negative for the virus and results for the remaining three are pending, according to the report.

Hospitals across the nation have been on alert for patients who have recently traveled to affected nations. The latest scare to make headlines involves a patient at Kaiser Permanente Medical Center in Sacramento, California, who has been isolated in a negative pressure room while awaiting blood test results from the CDC. Mount Sinai Hospital in New York, Johns Hopkins Medicine in Maryland, and an undisclosed hospital in Ohio have also tested patients for Ebola over the past several weeks, according to the ABC News report.

The virus, for which there is no known cure, causes flu-like respiratory symptoms and a fever, and eventually leads to severe hemorrhaging and organ failure. It is not contagious through the air or water, but through contact with bodily fluids, making healthcare workers especially at risk. It has killed more than 1,229 people in Africa.

 



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