Ebola Scare Hits NYC

Posted: Aug 04, 2014 9:55 PM

While multiple sources are saying this is likely not a case of the deadly African virus, a man in New York City was placed in isolation and tested for Ebola earlier today. The man had a fever and gastrointestinal issues (symptoms of the virus) and had recently traveled to a West African country.

“After consultation with CDC and Mount Sinai, the Health Department has concluded that the patient is unlikely to have Ebola,” the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene said in a statement early Monday evening. “Specimens are being tested for common causes of illness and to definitively exclude Ebola.”

One American patient infected with Ebola landed in Atlanta on Saturday, while a plane carrying another departed for the United States late Monday night. The two were infected while working in Liberia.

Americans have little to be concerned about a mass outbreak in the United States. Ebola is only spread through contact between infected bodily fluids, such as blood or urine–not by water or air, like other ailments. More people have died from malaria in the past two days than have ever succumbed to Ebola. As the Ebola kills quickly, patients typically die before they get the chance to spread it. Additionally, hospitals in the United States are among the best in the world, further reducing chances of any sort of outbreak in North America.

While it's certainly a good thing to be vigilant about personal hygiene, considering flu season is just around the corner, it's also important to avoid any sort of premature panic.