The Dallas Star Telegram has just reported that children in four Dallas Independent School District schools may have possibly been exposed to the Ebola virus. This makes the possible contacts of the original Ebola patient rise to 80.
Five school students may have been in contact with the original Ebola patient over the weekend, and they have been in school since that time. This is causing parents to panic, and pull their kids out of Dallas schools. These children have since been pulled from school and will likely be quarantined for at least 21 days.
The Ebola patient, Thomas Eric Duncan, reportedly interacted with several children, with at least one of those children attending the L.L. Hotchkiss Elementary School at 6929 Town North Drive.
The school has sent a letter to parents, saying:
“This morning, we were made aware that one of our students may have had contact with an individual who was recently diagnosed with the Ebola virus. This student is currently not showing any symptoms and is under close observation by the Dallas County Health and Human Services Department.”
While exposure does not automatically mean an infection will take place, it clearly presents precisely that risk. This is why parents are concerned, especially since the virus can replicate in a human host for up to three weeks before symptoms appear.
Since Ebola has an incubation period of 2 – 21 days, meaning a child or adult can carry the virus for up to three weeks without showing any symptoms, why is the government stating that people are not infected, when in fact it is too early to tell?
“This case is serious,” Perry said during a news conference at Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital Dallas, where Duncan is being treated. “Rest assured that our system is working as it should. Professionals on every level on the chain of command know what to do to minimize this potential risk to the people of Texas and of this country.”
If every level of government (and our government sponsored medical system) understands the risks, why do they continue to give misinformation about this virus? Duncan was sent home with antibiotics when he first visited Presby hospital in Dallas, as locals call the establishment. This means he was free to interact with these kids – and now parents have to worry for their children’s safety. The patient should have been immediately quarantined. Only now does the CDC claim it is monitoring a list of 80 different people that have had contact with the Ebola patient.
While officials will likely be able to contain this outbreak, the events surrounding it speak volumes about what our health and government officials are capable of. The Nurses Union has already made it very clear that the CDC’s claim that ‘hospitals are well equipped to handle the Ebola crisis’ is ludicrous. Nurses are saying they are untrained and unprepared to handle such cases.
“They feel US nurses are unprepared and untrained to handle an outbreak of Ebola, and the events in the Texas hospital that found the first US case of the virus might tend to buttress nurses who say they are unprepared.”
What happens if Ebola is carried very unsuspecting hosts into large U.S. cities over the next 12 months? If the spread of Ebola continues to rage across Africa, how can any nation protect itself from the spread unless it rejects all air passengers originating from affected nations?
Ebola could possibly be spreading through an elementary school in Dallas, but the more concerning scenario is if it begins to spread through workplaces such as office buildings, paramedics, and hospitals. Hospitals actually spread more cases of Ebola in Africa than they prevented. Is that what we can expect here?
Christina Sarich is a humanitarian and freelance writer helping you to Wake up Your Sleepy Little Head, and See the Big Picture. Her blog is Yoga for the New World. Her latest book is Pharma Sutra: Healing the Body And Mind Through the Art of Yoga.