NYC Dr. diagnosed with Ebola after trip to Africa- Traveled and played in the City before illness

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By Yolanda Spivey

A 33 year old doctor who traveled to West Africa to help fight against Ebola has come down with the virus himself.

Dr. Craig Spencer, who is also a member of Doctors Without Borders, had just returned from a trip to Guinea 6 days earlier.  On Thursday morning, he came down with a 100.3 degree fever and diarrhea, and was immediately admitted into Manhattan’s Bellevue Hospital in an isolation ward that is a designated Ebola center.

According to his Facebook page, the doctor left for West Africa via Brussels in mid-September.  Photos on his page shows him in full protective gear.

He wrote, “Off to Guinea with Doctors Without Borders. Please support organizations that are sending support or personnel to West Africa, and help combat one of the worst public health and humanitarian disasters in recent history.”

Upon his return, the doctor repeatedly rode the New York subway system, went on a 3-mile jog, went to the High Line park, and also took a taxi to a Brooklyn bowling alley on Wednesday night.

He reported that he felt fatigued on Wednesday which progressed to a fever by Thursday morning.

Health and New York City officials are trying to follow Dr. Spencer’s trail, informing the public of possible exposure. They assure that the chances of contracting Ebola from the doctor are slim.  They reminded the public that Ebola isn’t transmitted by “just being near someone who is sick with Ebola.”

Ebola is supposedly only contracted through direct contact with the bodily fluids of an infected person.

So far Dr. Spencer’s fiancée and two friends have been quarantined although they show no symptoms of the virus.

Mayor Bill de Blasio and Gov. Andrew Cuomo urged residents not to be alarmed by the doctor’s Ebola diagnosis. De Blasio said all city officials followed “clear and strong” protocols in their treatment of the doctor.

Mayor de Blasio further stated, “ We want to state the onset that New Yorkers have no reason to be alarmed. New Yorkers who have not been exposed are not at all at risk.”

The bowling alley where Dr. Spencer visited on Wednesday night issued a statement saying, “We’ve been in constant contact with the Health Department and they have determined that there was no risk to our customers.”

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has dispatched an Ebola response team to New York.  They are also doing further testing to confirm Dr. Spencer’s initial test results.

The Ebola virus has wrecked havoc in West Africa and has claimed the lives of 4,800 people.


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