Perhaps Americans who have been frightened by news media’s over the top coverage of the Ebola scare can sleep easier tonight. Several items of good news have come to the surface over the last couple of days.
Freelance cameraman Ashoka Mukpo was infected with Ebola in Africa and was flown home to the United States for treatment. Today the Nebraska Medical Center confirmed that the virus is no longer in his bloodstream and he was allowed to leave the hospital after being declared Ebola free.
Also today, National Institute of Health in Maryland, which has been treating Nina Pham, the first nurse to contract Ebola in Dallas, upgraded her condition fair to good. This means she is on her way to recovery.
The quarantine period of over 40 people, including Louise Troh, the girlfriend of Thomas Duncan, her son, and two nephews, came to and end yesterday. It had been 21 days since they had last come in contact with Duncan before he was admitted to the hospital and none had shown any symptoms of Ebola.
Also, Thomas Duncan died October 8th and the last of the two nurses who contracted Ebola was transferred from Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital in Dallas on October 15th. So the staff members who had come in contact with nurse Nina Pham while caring for her in Dallas are now six days into their twenty one day isolation period. Members of the staff who came into contact with Duncan, but not the two nurses, are thirteen days into their isolation period. However, in everyone’s estimation the most dangerous period for the Dallas hospital staff was in the first few days immediately after Duncan’s admittance to the hospital on September 28th when there was confusion about how the staff members should protect themselves. So as a practical matter we are very near twenty one days removed from the period of greatest danger of infection for the 74 staff members who are still in isolation. So while I am relatively comfortable that there will be no more Ebola cases in Dallas. Everyday that goes with an additional infection brings additional confirmation that my conclusion is correct.
With all of the good news the cable news channels have backed away from their 24/7 saturation coverage of the US Ebola “crisis”, though we know that if more people had been infected, that kind of coverage would have continued. CNN is now covering other stories and Fox new is no longer constantly hyping the Ebola scare for political purposes. That in itself is good news.