Published On: Mon, Oct 27th, 2014

Airport screens for Ebola

Curacao AirportWILLEMSTAD – Authorities at the Hato Airport are screening passengers for Ebola out of precaution. The immigration officers ask all arriving visitors whether they have recently traveled to a country ravaged by the deadly virus. Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea are currently the countries where there is an Ebola epidemic.

Epidemiologist Izzy Gerstenbluth recently instructed the immigration staff about the disease. The specialist trained the airport authorities on how to deal with a potentially infected person. It’s not only the care for this person, but also figuring out who this person sat next to in the plane or who served him or her during the flight. Basically, who he or she was in contact with.

The coordinator, in this case Dr. Gerstenbluth, must be immediately notified so that the prevention process can be initiated. In the event that Ebola has been detected, all passengers need to leave the plane, with the exception of individuals exhibiting symptoms.

Ambulance personnel are informed and the patient is isolated. Information must also be obtained from the persons who have been in direct contact with the patient.

The epidemiologist insisted that vials filled with disinfectant soap are placed on all immigration counters. When there are suspicions of the presence of Ebola, the members of the corps should be protected when they deal with the documents of the person in question.

Gerstenbluth also explained during the training that an Ebola virus is transmitted via direct contact with another through blood, semen, sweat, feces and urine of a person who is infected with the virus.

The epidemiologist also explained that the mortality rate is high for those who become infected with the disease. The death rate is currently between 50 and 90 percent. The incubation period is three weeks. Symptoms of Ebola are: high fever, headache, muscle pain, vomiting blood, blood in the feces, bleeding from the mouth, nose and eyes and internal bleeding.

In order to prevent that a person is infected with this virus, the hands must be washed frequently, and contact with blood, urine, semen, sweat and feces should be avoided.

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