- The Washington Times - Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Texas Gov. Rick Perry said Wednesday that some school-age children had contact with the first patient to ever be diagnosed with the Ebola virus.

The Republican provided no details about the interaction but said the parents are “extremely concerned” about the development.

“Let me assure [that] these children have been identified and are being monitored, and the disease cannot be transmitted before having any symptoms,” he said in a press conference.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the infected person sought treatment at Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital of Dallas on Friday. He was admitted Sunday and tested for Ebola, based on his symptoms and travel history.

The patient had flown from Liberia, one of the nations most affected by the outbreak in West Africa, to Texas to visit relatives, according to health officials.

According to Reuters, the patient flew to the U.S. via Brussels, although officials have said the patient was not infectious at the time.

Mark Lester, a clinical leader for Texas Health Resources, said the patient told a nurse at the hospital about his travels from West Africa.

But the information, “regretfully,” did not filter through the entire health care team and did not factor into the team’s initial clinical decisions before he checked out of the hospital for two days.

Officials are saying little about the infected patient, who was visiting family members in Texas, citing health privacy laws.

However, the CDC said it has a team of people in the Dallas area who are tracing every instance in which the infected patient may have had direct physical contact with somebody, once he became infectious.

The Ebola virus does not spread through the air. Rather, it is transmitted by direct contact with the bodily fluids of an infected person or contaminated objects, such as needles.

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