By Yara Del Rio-Dominguez |Staff Writer|
The Ebola virus has entered the U.S. Here are some facts about the Ebola virus and how it spreads from one person to another.
According to Nature World News, “Ebola is thought to have had originated in small and unassuming animals in West Africa.”
It is not transmitted through air and water, contrary to what many people believe.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Ebola is transmitted through direct contact with broken skin, the eyes, nose, or mouth where bodily fluids such as urine, saliva, sweat, vomit, breast milk, and semen can enter.
“Students with a positive recent travel history to the endemic countries in combination with symptoms are referred directly to a local ER equipped to handle possible Ebola exposure,” said Dr. Patricia Smith, CSUSB director of the student health center.
“We have a large community here on campus,” said student Luis Portobanco.
“International students and those who studied abroad this summer should all be more aware of the Ebola symptoms because they go hand-in-hand with flu-like symptoms if they are feeling sick.”
The campus is in direct communication with the county epidemiologist and has a campus-wide disaster plan, which includes communicable disease response.
It is also untrue that expensive hand sanitizers are necessary for aiding in the prevention of contracting Ebola.
“Routine hand washing with soap and water is recommended. Ebola can be killed with disinfectants like bleach,” according to ABC News.
Students should be aware of the symptoms of the Ebola virus, because they are very similar to flu symptoms.
Early symptoms of Ebola include sudden fever, intense weakness, sore throat, and headache. Do not be alarmed if you begin to experience flu-like symptoms.
According to the CDC, Dr. Todd Hatchette, Director of Virology and Immunology at Dalhousie University in Halifax believes with flu season vastly approaching, the number of ER visitations will rise.
The CDC’s recommendations on how traveling, study abroad or transfer students can protect themselves from Ebola can be found on the CSUSB Student Health Center website.
“I’m not worried about contracting Ebola,” said student Jennifer Kennedy.
“If I began feeling sick I’d assume it’d be the flu, not Ebola, since I haven’t traveled outside the country.”
If you have traveled outside the country and begin feeling these symptoms, it is recommended you seek immediate medical attention.
“The Student Health Center requests that if you have traveled to one of the endemic countries and have flu-like symptoms, do not come into the health center, but call the triage line at 909 537-5241,” said Smith.