The Huffington Post reported: “Ebola has never been transmitted in the United States (and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention notes that it “does not pose a significant risk to the U.S. public”). Yet, four in 10 adults in the U.S. are afraid that there will be a large outbreak in this country, according to a recent survey from the Harvard School of Public Health.
The survey, conducted along with independent research company SSRS, also showed that one in four U.S. adults is worried that a member of their immediate family will become sick with Ebola sometime in the next year.
However, despite headlines announcing the latest high death toll in West Africa from the deadly virus, the risk of an outbreak like that happening in the United States is extremely low, experts say. That’s because a person with the virus is only contagious when he or she is symptomatic, plus, you’d have to actually come physically in contact with the person’s bodily fluids (or contaminated objects/animals) in order to contract the virus. As for the two Americans who came to the U.S. for treatment for Ebola from West Africa, “there is zero danger to the U.S. public from these [two] cases or the Ebola outbreak in general,” University of Pittsburgh infectious disease doctor Amesh Adalja told The Washington Post.”
Click here to read the full Huffington Post article “Nearly Half Of Americans Are Afraid The U.S. Will Experience An Ebola Outbreak” by Amanda L. Chan.
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Jonathan M. Metsch, Dr.P.H., is Clinical Professor, Preventive Medicine, Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai; and Adjunct Professor, Baruch College ( C.U.N.Y.), Rutgers School of Public Health, and Rutgers School of Public Affairs and Administration.
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