What to Know
- A patient was tested for Ebola at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia.
- Out of an abundance of caution, HUP took extra precautions to ensure the continued safety of staff, patients and visitors.
- The patient turned out not to be infected with Ebola.
A patient at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania has been cleared of Ebola after doctors originally feared the person might be infected with the potentially deadly disease.
The patient, whose identity was kept confidential due to privacy laws, was indeed not infected with the disease after being admitted to the hospital and quarantined, Pennsylvania Department of Health Press Secretary Nate Wardle said.
"In this case, the department was asked to consult on a case, and after further investigation and testing, Ebola has been ruled out and another diagnosis has been made," Wadle said.
HUP had said there was no risk to other patients or visitors but they took extra precautions, like isolating the patient in an area of the hospital where they wouldn't be in contact with other patients or members of the public, Penn Medicine's chief medical officer Dr. Patrick J. Brennan said.
"Clinical teams at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania have received extensive training and conduct ongoing preparations for the possibility of caring for a patient with the Ebola virus since the appearance of the virus in the United States in 2014," Brennan said.
An Ebola outbreak was declared just over six months ago in the eastern part of Congo. It's that African country's 10th outbreak and the world's second largest recorded.
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Ebola is a rare deadly disease that mostly affects primates but can be contracted by humans, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says on its website.
"Ebola virus spreads to people through direct contact with bodily fluids of a person who is sick with or has died from Ebola Virus Disease (EVD), the CDC says. "This can occur when a person touches the infected body fluids (or objects that are contaminated with them), and the virus gets in through broken skin or mucous membranes in the eyes, nose, or mouth. The virus can also spread to people through direct contact with the blood, body fluids and tissues of infected fruit bats or primates. People can get the virus through sexual contact as well."