Update 11:57 pm:
Ebola has been ruled out in the patient admitted to The Queen’s Hospital in Honolulu, according to the Hawaii Department of Health. KHON2 reports a statement from Health Director Dr. Linda Rosen, “After investigation by the health department, it was determined that the individual did not meet the clinical or travel exposure criteria for an Ebola infection.”
Original Report 2:58 am:
A man in Hawaii was admitted to a hospital on Wednesday morning, and has been placed in isolation. The Department of Health in Hawaii has confirmed that they are evaluating the patient for possible symptoms of Ebola, among other things.
The patient presented to The Queen’s Medical Center in Honolulu with symptoms that could be Ebola, or, says Dr. Melissa Viray, deputy state epidemiologist, the symptoms could be something like typhoid, malaria, or the flu, according to KHON2.
He will be undergoing testing for a number of things, but as of late Wednesday afternoon, no test for Ebola had yet been performed. When it is, the Department of Health says the test will have to be sent to the mainland before a confirmation could be made, according to Hawaii News Now. It can take up to 21 days for symptoms to appear for Ebola, according to the NY Daily News.
“We have not definitively said, we don’t know why this person is ill. But because we have concerns regarding Ebola as a possibility, even as a distant one, [the hospital] is taking all the precautions necessary to keep people safe.”
Dr. Viray said that red flags for Ebola include fever and recent travel to West Africa, but she would neither confirm nor deny any information about the patient being kept in isolation. KHON2 requested more details about why the man was being isolated. She responded.
“When we’ve asked the hospitals to tell us about is anyone with a travel history, and anyone with a fever, and when those things come together, we’ve asked them to be very careful and in an abundance of caution while you’re working, for whatever else might be going on, also make sure you isolate against Ebola, just in case.”
KHON2 continued to press the Hawaii health official, “So it sounds like this person does have a fever and recently traveled to West Africa.” Presumably for privacy issues, she declined comment. “Again, I can’t be the one to confirm that.”
Officials report that they are working together with the Centers For Disease Control. According to The Blaze, public health officials are cautioning the public not to worry at this stage of evaluation.
This news comes on the heels of the confirmation of Ebola in a man who flew to Dallas, Texas, from Liberia, and the news of a second possible case in Dallas, as reported Wednesday by the Inquisitr.
Already eTurbo News is asking the question about what the possible implications could be for Hawaii on tourism with this news of a possible case of Ebola. They also add that the patient was “surprisingly was not isolated for most of the day.” They report that it was not until late afternoon that the man was placed in isolation.
That afternoon, a message was sent out to all of The Queen’s Hospital employees, including 1,400 nurses, stating that the hospital was “evaluating a patient for possible symptoms that may be consistent with Ebola.” The president of the Hawaii Nurses Association, Joan Craft, immediately contacted the hospital to ensure that there were safety measures in place to protect the Association members from Ebola.
The Hawaii Department of Health will update the public as new information becomes available about this possible case of Ebola in Honolulu, Hawaii.
[images via Travelling Words and Frederick Murphy/CDC]