A doctor who had recently returned from Guinea has tested positive for the deadly Ebola virus.
Dr. Craig Spencer has been placed in isolation at Bellevue Hospital as health workers attempt to find other people he may have been in contact recently.
Spencer’s fiancé has been quarantined but has not exhibited symptoms, while three friends have been contacted by health officials.
“I feel confident that we’re doing everything that we should be doing and we have the situation under control,” ew York Gov. Andrew Cuomo said.
Spencer, 33, returned from Guinea ten days ago after a stint working with the humanitarian group Doctors Without Borders.
According to a statement from the group, the doctor notified them Thursday morning he had developed a fever. The New York health department was immediately notified.
“There is no reason for New Yorkers to be alarmed,” said Mayor Bill de Blasio in a press conference from the hospital. “We’ve been preparing for months for the threat posed by Ebola … [it] is very difficult to contract. Being on the same subway car or living near someone with Ebola is not enough to put someone at risk.”
The doctor took the subway to a bowling alley in Williamsburg, Brooklyn on Wednesday, then returned home via taxi, according to NY Daily News. He self-quarantined himself at his apartment soon after he became symptomatic.
New York City health officials have been preparing for the possibility of Ebola patients in the city for quite some time.The hospital where Spencer is being treated, Bellevue, has four isolation rooms already and was designated as the go-to place for dealing with the virus.
Ebola is spread only through direct contact with blood or bodily fluids of infected patients, according to the CDC.
This post was updated with comments from the press conference at 7 p.m. PDT.
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