First case of Ebola in U.S. may have contacted 18, incl. 5 children, while showing symptoms

This is a follow-up of Steve’s post this morning on the first confirmed case of Ebola in the U.S.— a Liberian national who recently came to Dallas, Texas from Nigeria. Both Liberia and Nigeria are among the West African countries stricken by the terrible epidemic that has a 60-90% fatality rate.

Thomas Eric Duncan (from a Facebook photo)

Thomas Eric Duncan (from a Facebook photo)


The patient is identified by Liberian health officials and The Associated Press as Thomas Eric Duncan. He has been kept in isolation at Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital of Dallas since Sunday.
The latest:
Duncan may have infected a second man. Even worse, Duncan had come into contact with five children in five separate Dallas schools over the weekend. Altogether, Dallas health officials said today that they believe Duncan had come in contact with at least 12 to 18 people when he was experiencing symptoms and, therefore, was infectious. So far, none of his contacts has been confirmed to be infected.
Zachary Thompson

Zachary Thompson


USA Today reports, Oct. 1, 2014, that the director of Dallas County Health and Human Services, Zachary Thompson, said “there may be another case that is a close associate with this particular patient. So this is real. There should be a concern, but it’s contained to the specific family members and close friends at this moment.”
Mike Miles

Superintendent Mike Miles


The AP reports, Oct. 1, 2014, that Dallas Independent School District Superintendent Mike Miles said that the five students were in school this week after possibly being in contact with the man over the weekend. But Miles says the students are showing no symptoms and are now being monitored at home. As an added precaution, Miles says additional health and custodial staff will be at the five schools the students attend.
Although the first Ebola man may have infected a second individual as well as five students, Zachary Thompson continues to insist that the public isn’t at risk because health officials have the virus contained.
Meanwhile, the New York Times reports, Oct. 1, 2014, that the infected man, Thomas Eric Duncan, arrived in the United States on Sept. 20 aboard a commercial airliner. Officials said Duncan had shown no symptoms of the disease while on the flight and that he had posed no threat to other passengers.
Duncan worked at a shipping company in Monrovia, Liberia, but had just quit his job, giving his resignation in early September, his boss said. Duncan’s neighbors in Liberia said he had gotten a visa to the United States and had decided to go. He lived alone, but has family in the United States.
Authorities also said an early opportunity to put Duncan in isolation, limiting the risk of contagion, may have been missed because of a failure to pass along critical information about his travel history. Duncan had sought medical help but was sent home, two days before he was finally admitted into the hospital.

  • Friday, Sept. 19: Duncan boards flight from Liberia.
  • Saturday, Sept. 20: Arrives in Dallas to visit family.
  • Wednesday, Sept. 24: Duncan develops symptoms of Ebola, including fever.
  • Friday, Sept. 26: Seeks care at hospital but is sent home.
  • Sunday, Sept. 28: Placed in isolation at Dallas hospital.
  • Tuesday, Sept. 30: Lab confirms Duncan has Ebola.

Unlike Director of Dallas County Health and Human Services Zachary Thompson, Texas Gov. Rick Perry is taking matters very seriously. He said at a news conference today: “This case is serious. This is all hands on deck.”

Health officials are continuing to track down other people who might have been exposed to Duncan after he began showing symptoms, and will monitor those individuals every day for 21 days — the full incubation period of the disease. Most people develop symptoms within 8 to 10 days. As a patient becomes sicker and the virus replicates in the body, the likelihood of the disease spreading grows.

Health officials insist the disease is only spread via bodily contact with people with symptoms such as diarrhea or vomiting. But a 2012 Canadian research study casts doubt on that, showing that the Ebola virus could be transmitted by air across two animal species.

Ebola in West Africa

Meanwhile, The Daily Caller reports the happy news that 13,500 people from the Ebola-stricken countries of Sierra Leon, Guinea and Liberia have visas to visit the United States, according to federal data.

The data don’t show how many of those people are already in the United States, but visitors from those countries should be excluded until they can show they’re free of Ebola, said Jessica Vaughan, policy director at the Center for Immigration Studies, a group that pushes for low-scale immigration.

Under current policies, only people with obvious Ebola symptoms are excluded by border officials. But a person can be infected with the disease, and not show any symptoms, for up to 21 days.

Helloooo!!!!

That’s exactly the case with Thomas Eric Duncan.

He did not show Ebola symptoms during his flight from Nigeria and when he passed through U.S. Customs at Washington Dulles Airport, where he spent three hours. Four days later, he became symptomatic.

In other words, President Ebola’s “current policies” are letting infected but symptomless people through our borders.

All of which led Dr. Jesse L. Goodman, a former Food and Drug Administration chief scientist and top infectious disease specialist who’s now a professor of medicine at Georgetown University Medical Center, to say that given the exposure of several people to the Ebola virus by patient zero Duncan, it’s likely that many more will be infected.

As reported by the Washington Examiner, Dr. Goodman warns that while Americans shouldn’t panic, it’s best to prepare for the worst. He said in a statement:

“If anyone did not agree before, bringing the epidemic in Africa under control is an absolute emergency and requires a massive effort and global commitment now long overdue. This is a matter not just of preventing death and suffering in Africa, but, as this case brings home to the U.S., of global safety and security.
While there is an expectation that this case, and likely future ones, can be contained, it is important not to be overconfident and to continuously, now and in the future, reexamine both how the virus is behaving and also the public health and medical response to see what can potentially be improved.
It is critical for hospitals and health care workers everywhere to be sure they are alert, obtain travel histories and, if there is any question at all it could be Ebola, contact CDC and, while sorting things out, act to isolate a sick patient returning from an epidemic area.”
Goodman suggested that travel be limited to the area in West Africa where the epidemic is raging. “If less people traveled, risks may be reduced, and active follow-up and education of travelers could also be facilitated.”
Just wait till the U.S. soldiers — including 700 of the 101st Airborne Division who are heading to Liberia in late October — whom President Ebola is sending to “combat” the pandemic in West Africa, come home . . . .
H/t FOTM’s DCG and Anon
See also:

UPDATE (Oct. 2, 2014):

Yahoo reports that two days after he was sent home from a Dallas hospital, Thomas Eric Duncan was seen vomiting on the ground outside an apartment complex as he was bundled into an ambulance.

His whole family was screaming. He got outside and he was throwing up all over the place,” resident Mesud Osmanovic, 21, said on Wednesday, describing the chaotic scene before the man was admitted to Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital on Sunday where he is in serious condition.

~Eowyn

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0 responses to “First case of Ebola in U.S. may have contacted 18, incl. 5 children, while showing symptoms

  1. wow, Doc! Thanks!

     
  2. “but it’s contained to the specific family members and close friends at this moment.” Just how do they know that?
    I was at my hairdresser’s this am. She told me there’s an upcoming college football game between OK and TX. A lot of people from Oklahoma will be going to Dallas for the game. Then they’ll be coming back here. If this isn’t contained, it can spread fast.

     
  3. Well, we have already had one resignation today by a bureaucrat that was hired for reasons other than her qualifications.
    The next one that needs to go is the head of the CDC, as he seems more concerned with stigmatizing the countries where the Ebola outbreak is happening than doing anything to isolate these places to keep it contained.
    Political correctness is a mental disorder and it gets people killed.
    -Dave

     
    • Emotional butthurt is about the most fearful thing of which a progressive left/liberal can conceive… after that, they shut down and go into denial (nothing could possibly be worse than hurt feelings, you know).

       
  4. Dr. Eowyn, FOTM,
    None of this is without precedence in history:
    Got #Ebola?
    In an age that bore witness to Josef Mengele’s Human Experiments, Stalin’s quest for Man-Gorilla Soldiers, The Tuskegee syphilis experiment, Project MKULTRA, Subproject 68, Japan’s infamous Unit 731, Et al, why would it surprise us there is a severe ethical and moral vacuum in application of science, technology, genetics, biology by governments, corporations and the militaries; no more than a reflection of global society itself.
    Full Post: http://wp.me/p1amkx-63z
    #Progressive #Revolution #Society #Dallas #Texas #Africa 

     
  5. It doesn’t SURPRISE us-I think DISGUST is a more apt word.

     
  6. Reblogged this on Centinel2012 and commented:
    12 to 18 seems more likely giving the way this played out but it could be more. With an R2 factor we are going to be doubling cases every 2 to 3 weeks now.

     
  7. Pingback: First case of Ebola in U.S. may have contacted 12-18, incl. 5 children, while showing symptoms

  8. Pingback: President and Commander In Chief Barack Obama missed 6 of 10 daily intelligence briefings | Consortium of Defense Analysts

  9. UPDATE (Oct. 2, 2014):
    Yahoo reports that two days after he was sent home from a Dallas hospital, Thomas Eric Duncan was seen vomiting on the ground outside an apartment complex as he was bundled into an ambulance.
    Scroll up to my post for Duncan’s photo.

     
  10. Last night I watched the press conference from Dallas. The speaker stated Thomas Duncan tested positively for the Ebola Zaire strain. No reporters asked any questions about this little tidbit of info. Ebola Zaire is the most deadly strain of Ebola. Isn’t the current outbreak a different strain? If so, then there are two different strains of Ebola occurring simultaneously.
    Here is a link to a CNN article from August. I thought you all would find it interesting as the current narrative in the press slightly differs from this report.
    http://www.cnn.com/2014/08/07/world/ebola-virus-q-and-a/?c=&page=1

     
  11. I don’t know about the rest of you, but I am getting the distinct feeling the government has no clue of how to deal with an Ebola outbreak here at home, and may very well have already lost control of the situation – if they ever had it to begin with.
    I hope I’m wrong.
    -Dave

     

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