Ebola Patients Coming to the US: How Safe Are We?
Aug 1, 2014, 10:53 AM ET
By COLLEEN CURRY
Two Americans who are battling the deadly Ebola virus are being evacuated from Africa with the plan to fly them to U.S. hospitals to receive treatment.
The patients, who both caught the disease while in Africa, will be transported in elaborate isolation chambers and receive treatment by medical staff in protective suits.
Despite the precautions, fears about the disease have spread well beyond Africa. And when the doctors are indeed brought to the U.S., it would be the first time that people with the virus would be on American soil.
"This concern about the introduction of Ebola and its possible spread in the United States has been an aspect of this story that has taken off and somewhat surprised those of us in infectious disease and public health," said Dr. William Shaffner, an infectious disease specialist at Vanderbilt University School of Medicine.
"There are a number of reasons for that -- it’s a very very fatal virus, and this outbreak is the largest ever and it’s not controlled so that’s frightening. It’s exotic and mysterious coming from Africa, and now there are two American faces to it and in fact those American faces are coming home," he said.