A woman who returned from Guinea 18 days ago and was on an Ebola monitoring list dropped dead in a Brooklyn hair salon yesterday after eyewitnesses said she began bleeding from the mouth and nose, but authorities later asserted the cause of death was an “apparent heart attack.” “FDNY activated the Special Operations and Hazmat units after the the woman, who had traveled to Guinea three weeks ago according to a source on the scene, died at Amy Professional African Hair Braiding in the Brownsville area of Brooklyn,” reports the Daily Mail. Despite eyewitnesses reporting that there was blood coming from the woman’s “face, nose and mouth,” health authorities claimed “she had not displayed any Ebola symptoms” and had in fact died of a heart attack.
Noted infectious disease experts have said that the current strain of Ebola virus plaguing Africa and slowly spreading in the United States is potentially much more lethal than previous strains identified by virologists. As reported by Washington’s Blog, Dr. Michael Osterholm, the head of the Center for Infection Disease Research and Policy at the University of Minnesota, a prominent public health researcher who is nationally recognized, gave a talk in recent days explaining what another top Ebola virologist has found.
State health officials announced in a press conference today that a woman who has been under monitoring for Ebola has been isolated at a Portland-area hospital and is no danger to the public. The woman had recently traveled to one of the three countries where the Ebola outbreak is occurring—Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone—and was being actively monitored by public health officials. She developed a sustained fever this morning, after which she received an in-person assessment by an EMS team wearing personal protective equipment.
Government agencies across the world are rushing to snap up protective gear as concerns about the spread of the Ebola virus continue to dominate, with Lakeland Industries announcing that it has received 1 million orders for Hazmat suits alone. Lakeland hit the headlines last month when it was revealed that the U.S.
The Centers for Disease Control has expanded the list of risk factors for Ebola that increase the federal agency’s power to forcibly quarantine individuals suspected of being exposed to the virus. Under the new guidelines, issued on Monday, individuals are subject to “movement restrictions” if they have briefly been in the vicinity of an Ebola victim. Previously the CDC outlined how, “Brief interactions, such as walking by a person or moving through a hospital, do not constitute close contact.
The number of confirmed Ebola cases passed the 10,000 mark over the weekend, despite efforts to curb its spread. And while the disease typically dies on surfaces within hours, research has discovered it can survive for more than seven weeks under certain conditions. During tests, the UK’s Defence Science and Technology Laboratory (DSTL) found that the Zaire strain will live on samples stored on glass at low temperatures for as long as 50 days.
The nurse forcibly quarantined in New Jersey after she came home from treating Ebola patients in West Africa will be released Monday, state officials said. Kaci Hickox has been held against her will in a tent inside a wing of a New Jersey medical center since she was taken off a flight, flushed and distraught, Friday. Hickox has hired a lawyer and spoken out publicly against her quarantine.
A 5-year-old boy who just returned from West Africa was transported to Bellevue Hospital Sunday with possible Ebola symptoms, according to law-enforcement sources. The child was vomiting and had a 103-degree fever when he was carried from his Bronx home by EMS workers wearing hazmat suits, neighbors said. “He looked weak,” said a neighbor.
The Obama administration has been pushing the governors of New York and New Jersey to reverse their decision ordering all medical workers returning from West Africa who had contact with Ebola patients to be quarantined, an administration official said on Sunday. But both governors, Andrew M. Cuomo of New York and Chris Christie of New Jersey, stood by their decision, saying that the federal guidelines did not go far enough.
A doctor in New York City who recently returned from treating Ebola patients in Guinea became the first person in the city to test positive for the virus Thursday, setting off a search for anyone who might have come into contact with him. The doctor, Craig Spencer, was rushed to Bellevue Hospital Center and placed in isolation at the same time as investigators sought to retrace his steps over the past several days. At least three people he had contact with have been placed in isolation.
A 33-year-old Doctors Without Borders physician who recently treated Ebola patients in Guinea was rushed in an ambulance with police escorts from his Harlem home to Bellevue Hospital on Thursday, sources said. Craig Spencer, who was was suffering from Ebola-like symptoms — a 103-degree fever and nausea — spent Wednesday night bowling in Williamsburg, the sources said. He used Uber taxis to get there and back.
Mali confirmed its first case of Ebola on Thursday, becoming the sixth West African country to be touched by the worst outbreak on record of the hemorrhagic fever, which has killed nearly 4,900 people. Mali’s Health Minister Ousmane Kone told state television that the patient in the western town of Kayes was a two-year-old girl who had recently arrived from neighboring Guinea, where the outbreak began. “The condition of the girl, according to our services, is improving thanks to her rapid treatment,” the minister told state television.
Dr. Peter Jahrling has been on the ground in the Liberian capital of Monrovia, studying the disease with a team of researchers, which is also helping to care for and treat patients. He says the viral loads that his team is witnessing exceed what has been observed during previous outbreaks, suggesting that, this time, the disease is far more deadly.
The Hot Zone was written by Richard Preston after he conducted dozens of interviews with virologists, scientists and doctors, many of which spent time on the front lines in Africa, hunting for the origins of Ebola. One scientist spent so much time looking for Ebola carriers in caves that he was jokingly called “Dr. Bat S#!