Person County quarantine aimed to keep public calm over Ebola scare
Posted November 4, 2014
Raleigh, N.C. — North Carolina's state epidemiologist said Tuesday that three Person County residents under quarantine while a family member from Liberia is monitored for Ebola are of no risk to the community but are choosing to isolate themselves to avoid contributing to any public fear of the virus or misunderstanding of how it spreads.
Meanwhile, the unidentified patient – in isolation at Duke University Hospital in Durham – continues to show no symptoms of the disease and is waiting for additional testing, which will likely happen Wednesday, Dr. Megan Davies told reporters at a news conference Tuesday afternoon.
"The family is working with the health department and understands the importance of reassuring the community by staying home while we wait for a second test," Davies said. "We don't see a risk of transmission of disease from any of these family members."
If the confirmatory test comes back negative, Davies added, the patient will be released.
Health officials have not released the person's age, race or gender for privacy reasons but say the person is a visitor and does not live in Person County.
He or she arrived from Liberia at Newark Liberty International Airport on Saturday and traveled by bus to Durham County, where family members met him or her.
The person – who had no known exposure to Ebola – self-monitored and called the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention once developing a fever of 101.9 degrees Sunday night.
He or she has been quarantined at Duke Hospital since then, and about 10-12 hospital employees have come in direct contact with the patient.
Those employees, hospital officials have said, have been told to avoid contact with others but have not been quarantined.
The ambulance used to transport the patient has also been taken out of commission until the second test result is returned.