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Very low risk for ebola to reach Pennsylvania, say experts

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Photo by (AP Photo/Sunday Alamba)

Nigerian health officials wait to screen passengers at the arrival hall of Murtala Muhammed International Airport in Lagos, Nigeria.

(Harrisburg) — More than 800 people have died from ebola, but experts say the chance it spreads to Pennsylvania are very, very low.

One medical aid worker who contracted ebola while working to slow its spread in Africa is getting treatment at a special isolation unit in an Atlanta hospital, and another American is scheduled to arrive soon.

But infectious disease specialists and doctors all agree that those in Pennsylvania shouldn’t fear an outbreak.

However, they say that if anyone recently traveled to the countries where the virus is spreading, and develops a fever, nausea or other general sickness, they should tell their doctor immediately.

“Extensive isolation precautions and infection control will occur to make sure there’s no spread of the disease from these individuals. Facilities in the U.S. have far greater capabilities to contain the disease than most African treatment centers,” saysDr. Carrie DeLone, the state’s Physician General.

Ebola does not spread through the air; it requires contact with bodilyfluids of someone infected with the disease.

Adds DeLone:”There’s no significant public threat by bringing them home to the US for treatment. However, they will be able to monitor them closely and study the progression of the disease more vigorously. Hopefully, information can be gained to develop better treatment.”

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has already issued a warning to U.S. residents to avoid all nonessential travel to Sierra Leone, Liberia and Guinea.

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