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USA (Next Media Animation) - According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), it is not understood how the Ebola virus first appears in humans in the event of an outbreak.
But how it is spread to other victims is fairly well understood.
Ebola is not an airborne virus, the CDC says on its website, meaning it cannot spread by, for example, sitting next to an infected person in a bus or on a train. Ebola in general does not spread via water or food, or insects like mosquitoes, although it may be spread by eating bushmeat or coming into contact with infected animals.
The virus can only be spread among humans by a patient who is already showing symptoms, such as fever, flu-like body pain, abdominal pain, diarrhea and vomiting. To become infected, a person needs to come into contact with an infected person’s bodily fluids such as blood, sweat, vomit, feces, urine, saliva or semen.
The virus can be spread through direct contact with broken skin or mucous membranes. Health workers wear protective gear such as masks, goggles and gloves to avoid this kind of contact.
The current Ebola epidemic is the first to have spread outside the African continent. Before this year, Ebola outbreaks have mostly been confined to remote parts ofAfrica.
SOURCES: CDC, VOX,
A health care worker at Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital who provided care for an Ebola patient there has tested positive for the virus.
DALLAS, TEXAS, UNITED STATES (NBC) - A health care worker at Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital who provided care for an Ebola patient there has tested positive for Ebola in a preliminary test, the Texas Department of State Health Services said in a statement on Sunday (October 12).
The health care worker at the Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital reported a low-grade fever Friday night and was isolated and referred for testing, the Texas Department of State Health Services said in a statement.
"We knew a second case could be a reality, and we've been preparing for this possibility," said Dr.David Lakey, commissioner of the health service.
The number of people known to have died in the worst Ebola outbreak on record has risen to 4,033 out of 8,399 cases in seven countries, the World Health Organization said on Friday.
Airline cleanup crews at New York's LaGuardia walk off the job over growing concerns over exposure to diseases. The protest comes as fears grow over Ebola on U.S. soil, prompting concern among some passengers as well.
NEWARK, NEW JERSEY, UNITED STATES (OCTOBER 09, 2014) (NBC) - About 200 airline cabin cleaners walked off the job at New York's LaGuardia Airport on Thursday (October 9) to protest what they say is a lack of sufficient protection from exposure to germs and diseases for workers whose jobs include cleaning up vomit and bathrooms.The protest comes amid heightened fears over Ebola as the disease spreads inWest Africa and more cases are reported around the world, including on U.S. soil.
Picket lines were set up overnight by non-unionized Air Serv cleaners outsideTerminal D at LaGuardia for a one-day strike prompted by fears about cleaners' safety, including exposure to potentially deadly viruses such as Ebola. The protest by the airline cleaners has forced crew members to clean the planes themselves.
"We want protection during our job. We want our jobs because we need it but we also need to protect ourselves as people, to be respected as people. And the condition that we work in is without any protection for our own health," an Air Serv cabin cleaner said during the protest.
"Your health and your safety and your life is being put at risk because you are being pricked with needles and not given proper gloves or trainings of how to deal with it," he said.
The workers, who are trying to join the union, briefly left the strike line to attend an infectious disease training session organized by the union.
The training lasted less than an hour and focused on removing contaminated glovesand washing up properly after potential exposure.
It was attended by workers from LaGuardia and John F. Kennedy International Airport, who fumbled with putting on and taking off bright blue and green latexgloves, which they said were thicker and better quality than the ones supplied by their employer.
U.S. officials this week announced tighter screening of travelers from West Africa, where Ebola has killed more than 3,800 people, at five major airports, including JFK.
LaGuardia, which serves only U.S., Canadian and Caribbean destinations, is not among them.
Some passengers welcomed the fortified measure.
He reassured that New York is well-prepared.
"A group of exceedingly capable individuals and agencies working together are here today, a planning session talking about different scenarios so that we can be ready for each and every one," he said.
The federal government implemented tighter screening measures after Thomas Eric Duncan, a Liberian national who was the first person diagnosed with Ebola on U.S. soil, died at a Dallas hospital on Wednesday (October 8).