This is why I agree with the President that we have to devote as many resources as we can to fighting Ebola.
A patient being treated at a Dallas hospital is the first person diagnosed with Ebola in the United States, health officials announced Tuesday.
The unidentified man left Liberia on September 19 and arrived in the United States on September 20, said Dr. Thomas Frieden, director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
At that time, the individual did not have symptoms. “But four or five days later,” he began to exhibit them, Frieden said. The individual was hospitalized and isolated Sunday at Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital.
The CDC is trying to identify his contacts and quarantine them for the week-long incubation period. I hope that this is an isolated case, but my natural pessimism tells me it isn’t.
Right now, the barrier keeping Ebola patients off of airplanes is screening in Africa. We may need to consider something more rigid, especially if the projections of hundreds of thousands of cases is accurate. Screening people getting off of planes who have been to Western Africa within the last two weeks would be a start. I don’t think we need extreme measures like banning travel from Africa or quarantine … yet. But this is a warning. Let’s not ignore it.