Northern California patient tested for
possible Ebola exposure
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[August 21, 2014]
By Alex Dobuzinskis
(Reuters) - Blood samples from a patient at
a Northern California hospital, who is suspected of having been exposed
to the deadly Ebola virus, will be tested by the federal Centers for
Disease Control and Prevention, officials said.
There have been no confirmed cases of Ebola in the United States,
though two American relief workers who contracted the disease in
Liberia were flown back to America for treatment earlier this month.
Since a recent outbreak of the disease in West Africa that has
killed more than 1,200 people, several people suspected of exposure
have been examined in the United States.
In the latest case, a patient admitted to South Sacramento Medical
Center in California's state capital may have been exposed to the
Ebola virus, Kaiser Permanente, the company that operates the
hospital, said in a statement Tuesday.
"The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention will be testing
blood samples to rule out the presence of the virus," officials from
Kaiser Permanente said. They said the patient had been isolated in a
negative pressure room even though the case had not been confirmed
The results of the test are expected within days, said Laura
McCasland, spokeswoman for the Sacramento County Department of
Health and Human Services.
Ebola, a hemorrhagic disease which can kill up to 90 percent of
those it infects, has claimed more than 1,200 lives this year in
Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea, and also has infected people in
Nigeria. It is the worst outbreak of the disease.
Kaiser Permanente and state and county health officials did not
release details on the Northern California patient's gender,
condition or possible travel to Africa.
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"There have been no patients admitted to California hospitals who
are considered to be at high risk of Ebola according to CDC
criteria," the California Department of Public Health said in a
On Monday, citing "an abundance of caution," New Mexico health
officials said they were carrying out tests on a female teacher who
returned from Sierra Leone this month and was in stable condition at
the University of New Mexico Hospital (UNM) in Albuquerque.
(Reporting by Alex Dobuzinskis in Los Angeles; Editing by Daniel
Wallis and Bernadette Baum)
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