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Campbell County Prepares for Ebola

Campbell County Prepares for Ebola

The Wyoming Department of Health, Campbell County Public Health and Campbell County Health are monitoring the situation and following the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) protocols for identification of the Ebola Virus in our communities.

Healthcare providers in Campbell County have received alerts with Ebola preparedness information from the Wyoming Department of Health and CDC. These alerts contain information on what symptoms patients with Ebola may have, what personal protective equipment is needed, as well as information on how to isolate a patient with symptoms to an appropriate room in their facility quickly and safely should the need arise. During this time, providers are also encouraged to ask questions about travel history, which is essential to determine if a patient might have been exposed to the virus in a known infected area.

For more information about the Ebola Virus, please visit the CDC web page: http://www.cdc.gov/vhf/ebola/.

Ebola Facts:

The following information was taken directly from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention web page on the Ebola Virus. You can read more at http://www.cdc.gov/vhf/ebola/.

If you travel to or are in an area affected by an Ebola outbreak, make sure to do the following:

  1. Practice careful hygiene. Avoid contact with blood and body fluids.
  2. Do not handle items that may have come in contact with an infected person’s blood or body fluids.
  3. Avoid funeral or burial rituals that require handling the body of someone who has died from Ebola.
  4. Avoid contact with bats and nonhuman primates or blood, fluids, and raw meat prepared from these animals.
  5. Avoid hospitals where Ebola patients are being treated. The U.S. embassy or consulate is often able to provide advice on facilities.
  6. After you return, monitor your health for 21 days and seek medical care immediately if you develop symptoms of Ebola.

Ebola is spread through direct contact (through broken skin or mucous membranes) with:

  • blood or body fluids (including but not limited to urine, saliva, feces, vomit, and semen) of a person who is sick with Ebola
  • objects (like needles and syringes) that have been contaminated with the virus
  • infected animals
  • Ebola is not spread through the air or by water, or in general, food. However, in Africa, Ebola may be spread as a result of handling bushmeat (wild animals hunted for food) and contact with infected bats.

Ebola can only be spread to others after symptoms begin. Symptoms of Ebola include:

  • Fever (greater than 38.6°C or 101.5°F)
  • Severe headache
  • Muscle pain
  • Weakness
  • Diarrhea
  • Vomiting
  • Abdominal (stomach) pain
  • Unexplained hemorrhage (bleeding or bruising)

Symptoms may appear anywhere from two to 21 days after exposure to Ebola, but the average is eight to 10 days. If you believe you have been exposed and have a fever or any of the above symptoms go to the nearest healthcare facility for care.

Healthcare providers caring for Ebola patients and the family and friends in close contact with Ebola patients are at the highest risk of getting sick because they may come in contact with infected blood or body fluids of sick patients. Healthcare providers in the United States have protocals in place to care for Ebola using personal protective equipment, such as gowns, gloves, masks, and face shields.

Recovery from Ebola depends on the patient’s immune response. People who recover from Ebola infection develop antibodies that last for at least 10 years.

Again, if you have questions concerning Ebola the Center for Disease Control (CDC) has a web page that provides up to date information about the virus, what it is, and what the public should do. Visit http://www.cdc.gov/vhf/ebola/.