Ozark Regional Health in Arkansas was under lockdown on Thursday because of a patient possibly having the Ebola virus.
The hospital in Clinton was checking one patient for the virus due to the patient’s travel history.
The hospital didn’t elaborate whether the patient has traveled to Africa recently, but that’s likely what “travel history” means.
But the hospital later confirmed that the patient does not have Ebola, reported Sam Guerra of KARK.
Multiple countries in Africa have Ebola outbreaks killing thousands of people. A Liberian man spread the disease to two Dallas nurses recently after traveling to the United States.
Angela Rachels of KATV spoke earlier in the day to the Arkansas Department of Health, which said the patient was “very-low risk.”
The patient’s name, age, and gender isn’t being released right now.
With fears of the virus spreading across the United States quickly increasing, the Arkansas state epidemiolgist Dr. Dirk Haselow said recently that state agencies have been preparing for a possible outbreak.
“Once we learned that this outbreak in West Afric was starting to simmer above and beyond what we’ve seen in the past with a full outbreak, we actively reached out to hospitals, the hospital associations, EMS programs, high ed. programs, big businesses, and doctors around the state to let them know what we’re planning to do and to make sure that our plans are feasible, implementable, and logical and to make sure that everyone buys into them,” he told told KUAF.
Haselow said that the preparation started ever before federal agencies such as CDC started preparing for possible entry into the United States.
He said that there’s a health network in Arkansas that doctors, hospitals, and emergency rooms use to communicate with each other for situations such as this.