An American health care provider being monitored for possible exposure to Ebola in the Democratic Republic of Congo has left Nebraska after being cleared by Nebraska Medicine – Nebraska Medical Center.
Nebraska Medicine reports the person, who has not been identified, never developed the disease.
“This person completed the required 21-day monitoring period and did not develop symptoms of the disease,” Dr. Ted Cieslak, infectious diseases specialist with Nebraska Medicine and associate professor of epidemiology in the University of Nebraska Medical Center (UNMC) College of Public Health, said in a written statement. “Because this individual was symptom free throughout the monitoring period, it was determined they did not have Ebola, and therefore, were free to depart our facility and return home.”
Nebraska Medicine says it and the University of Nebraska Medical Center are beginning to take on a larger monitoring and training role to prepare for possible Ebola exposure cases.
UNMC is set to become home to the Global Center for Health Security, which is being funded in part by a grant from the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response (ASPR). UNMC says the center will feature a six-bed biocontainment training unit and two independent quarantine units, which will have a total of 20 individual negative-air-pressure monitoring rooms.
The individual who arrived in Omaha December 29th was monitored in a secure area not accessible to the public or any patients. Federal, state and county public health officials coordinated the monitoring effort at Nebraska Medical Center.
If the person had developed Ebola, they would have been transferred to the Nebraska Biocontainment Unit, where three patients with Ebola were treated in 2014.
Nebraska Medical Center is home to one of the nation’s few dedicated biocontainment units.