Ebola is Spreading in the U.S. with a 2nd Confirmed Case-Truth!

Ebola is Spreading in the U.S. with a 2nd Confirmed Case-Truth!

Summary of eRumor:

Rumors that Ebola was spreading in the U.S. and that a second patient had been diagnosed with Ebola swept the Internet after Thomas Duncan, the first person to contract Ebola in the U.S., died on October 8, 2014.

The Truth:

A healthcare worker who came in contact with Thomas Duncan tested positive for Ebola on October 12, 2014.

The healthcare worker checked into a hospital on the evening of October 10, 2014, with a mild fever and flu-like symptoms. She was treated in isolation, and preliminary tests later confirmed she had the Ebola virus, the Texas Health Commission said.

“We knew a second case could be a reality, and we’ve been preparing for this possibility,” Texas Health Commissioner Dr. David Larky said. “We are broadening our team in Dallas and working with extreme diligence to prevent further spread.”

A separate false report of a second confirmed Ebola case in the U.S. surfaced immediately after the death of Thomas Duncan at a Dallas hospital. Rumors spread that a deputy who had been inside Duncan’s apartment was hospitalized and tested for Ebola on October 8, 2014, after he fell ill. Less than 24 hours later, however, the deputy’s symptoms had subsided. Medical officials ordered a test to quell public fear, even though the deputy didn’t have contact with the Ebola patient or any contaminated items, the Texas Health Commission reported.

“The risk is extremely low because this individual didn’t have contact with the Ebola patient, but we want to err on the side of caution,” Lakey said. 

False reports of a confirmed Ebola case in Hawaii also swarmed the Internet in early October 2014. The Hawaii Department of Health said an individual who had been held in isolation with Ebola-like symptoms did not meet the criteria for Ebola testing. 

“The hospital acted in the best interest of the community, with an abundance of caution,” Hawaii Health Director Dr. Linda Rosen said. “After our investigation by the health department, it was determined that the individual did not meet the clinical or travel exposure criteria for a an Ebola infection.”

More false reports of Ebola cases are likely with the public on high alert. Click here for information about Ebola outbreaks and confirmed cases from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Posted  10/09/14  Updated 10/13/14