On Friday, two volunteers in the Ebola outbreak in Africa were transported to the United Kingdom fro monitoring due to potential contact with Ebola virus.
Public Health England says the individuals have not been diagnosed with Ebola, do not currently have any symptoms, and their risk of developing the infection remains low.
The first individual had potential exposure to the virus in a frontline care setting, involving damage to their personal protective equipment, but they had no contact with the blood or bodily fluids of an Ebola patient during this time. This person is being monitored for the remainder of their 21 incubation period in private accommodation.
The second individual had potential exposure from contact with a healthcare worker who recently died and was subsequently diagnosed with Ebola. This individual, who is not a healthcare worker, will also undergo a full clinical assessment in hospital, and will be monitored in private accommodation until the 21 day incubation period is complete.
Dr Jenny Harries, regional director for PHE, said:
The risk to the public posed by these and indeed any of the returning workers is extremely low. We are confident that all appropriate public health actions have been taken, and will continue to be taken, to support these individuals and to protect the public’s health.
It’s important to remember, in choosing to volunteer, that these individuals have taken a courageous step not only to help those affected in West Africa, but also prevent the spread of Ebola any wider.
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