Minnesota prepares as Ebola enters United States in Atlanta
Ebola, a deadly virus that has infected patients in ten African countries. Today the second infected American doctor with the virus arrived in Atlanta. However, health officials in Brainerd don’t think it’ll affect us.
Essentia Health infection preventionist, Kari Russell, says, “There really should be very little impact in the United States. They’re really doing their very best to contain the virus where it is. They’re doing screening of all people leaving those countries so they can screen them of signs and symptoms of the disease before they leave.”
The Ebola virus is a fever. Some of the symptoms include: fever, diarrhea, vomiting, joint pains, muscle aches and in some more extreme cases, hemorrhaging and bleeding on the inside and outside of the body. But health officials the virus doesn’t spread through the air.
Russell says, “You can’t get it from just sitting next to somebody. You’d have to have contact with Ebola patients with any of their bladder or bodily fluids. So it’s a very contained subset of people at risk for transmission.”
With little known about the Ebola virus, the Minnesotans I talked to were split on whether they should be worried about the virus spreading.
Essentia Health says they have a list of what to look for from infected patients. They also recommend their patients talk to them before taking trips abroad.
Russell says, “So if you do have some plans to travel, it’s always a good idea to check with your provider or check with that international travel office to see if there’s anything preventative that you can do to take care of yourself before you even leave.”
Essentia Health says we should relay on the Center for Disease Control and the World Health Organization to do their job and keep the virus contained.
For more information visit CDC’s website: http://www.cdc.gov/vhf/ebola/