Eighty people reportedly came into contact with the Ebola patient who’s being treated in Dallas, and they’re now being interviewed by the Dallas County Health Department, according to a producer for WFAA-TV in Dallas.
Thomas Eric Duncan was diagnosed with Ebola this week. He’s the first person to be diagnosed with the dangerous disease in the US.
Duncan went to a Dallas emergency room with symptoms last week and told a nurse that he had recently traveled to the US from West Africa, which is currently seeing an unprecedented Ebola outbreak, but he was diagnosed with a minor infection and sent home, according to the Associated Press. He returned to the hospital when his symptoms worsened.
Officials initially identified only a dozen or so people who Duncan had come into contact with in the US, including some school children, but now that number has apparently swelled to 80.
The disease is contagious, but it spreads through bodily fluids, not the air, so it’s possible to contain.
Ebola begins with flu-like symptoms and in many cases escalates to internal and external bleeding and organ failure.
The disease has a high fatality rate. It has killed 3,338 and infected at least 7,178 people in West Africa so far, and those numbers continue to climb.
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