Patient being tested for Ebola at US hospital

There is a required 21-day monitoring period before the patient can be released

Sarah Harvard
New York
Wednesday 06 February 2019 19:09
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Scientists are searching for a cure for the disease, which killed thousands following an outbreak in 2014
Scientists are searching for a cure for the disease, which killed thousands following an outbreak in 2014

A patient is being tested for the rare and deadly Ebola virus in a hospital in Pennsylvania.

The Philadelphia clinic said it had ordered the test out of an “abundance of caution”, without providing information about the patient or their prognosis.

Dr PJ Brennan, the chief medical officer of Penn Medicine at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania, said preliminary testing of the patient had revealed another health condition.

“Proper protocols and precautions will remain in place to ensure the safety of all of our patients and staff,” Mr Brennan said in a statement.

The Ebola testing comes one month after an American man in Nebraska was monitored for possible exposure to the virus following a trip to the African continent.

The patient was released from the hospital after the required 21-day monitoring period when testing results determined he did not have any of the virus’s symptoms.

Ebola is considered to be a rare, but extremely deadly virus that often causes hemorrhagic fevers. The virus is named after a river in the Democratic Republic of Congo after it was discovered there in 1976. There is currently no proven cure.

The World Health Organisation reported this week that, since August, an Ebola outbreak in the DRC has killed at least 430 people.

In 2014, a major Ebola outbreak impacting Sierra Leone, Liberia and Guinea resulted in the deaths of more than 11,300 people.

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