Expert comment on risk of US Ebola outbreak
1 October 2014London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine https://lshtm.ac.uk/themes/custom/lshtm/images/lshtm-logo-black.png
In response to news of the first case of Ebola being diagnosed in the US, David Heymann, Professor of Infectious Disease Epidemiology at the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, said:
"Ebola is relatively easy to contain as long as you isolate any suspected cases and maintain good clinical practices to prevent onward transmission. US hospitals have good infection control measures in place, which involve isolating fevers of unknown origin, and using good clinical practices. It is also fairly easy and straightforward for US authorities to trace any contact the patient may have had, and to put contacts under fever surveillance. If these people then develop a fever, that would be diagnosed, and if Ebola, they would also be isolated, and their contacts traced. So as long as these systems are maintained, we don't need to worry about a major Ebola outbreak occurring in the US. The same activities that will contain Ebola in the US will also stop the outbreaks in Africa if applied effectively."