Craig Spencer, a 33-year-old doctor, is the first person to be diagnosed with Ebola in New York City.
Since being rushed to Manhattan’s Bellevue hospital on Thursday, immediately after showing symptoms, health officials have been retracing Spencer’s steps and working to identify anyone the patient may have come into contact with since returning to the United States from Guinea on Oct. 17.
As a member of Doctors Without Borders, Spencer had been treating Ebola patients in Guinea, one of three West African countries hit hardest by the Ebola epidemic.
At a press conference on Thursday night, Mayor Bill de Blasio urged New Yorkers not be alarmed.
Ebola patients cannot spread the virus until they begin showing symptoms. Ebola is transmitted only through contact with an infected person’s blood or other bodily fluids. Not through casual contact.
Here’s a quick timeline events that led up to Spencer’s diagnoses, and where he traveled.
Oct. 14: Spencer left Guinea.
Oct 17: The doctor arrived at John F. Kennedy airport. He displayed no symptoms at the time he left Guinea, and throughout his journey home.
Tuesday, Oct. 21: Spencer reported feeling tired. He had been checking his temperature twice a day after leaving Guinea.
Wednesday, Oct. 22: Spencer was out and about: He went on a 3-mile jog, took the A, 1, and L trains, and visited a bowling alley in Williamsburg. Aside from fatigue, Spencer was feeling well.
Thursday, Oct. 23: Spencer displayed the first Ebola symptoms, including a fever of 103 degrees, between 10 and 11 a.m. He immediately contacted Doctors Without Borders, which contacted the state health department.
The patient is currently at Bellevue Hospital, one of eight in New York State that has been designated as facility to handle Ebola cases.
So far, the city’s “disease detectives” have determined that there are four people he had contact with who are potentially at risk. Three of those people — his fiancee and two friends — have been placed in isolation. Officials initially had the driver of his Uber taxi on the list as a fourth contact, but they determined he was not at risk.
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