Texas Orders Family of Ebola Patient to Stay Home

News Release
News Release
October 2, 2014

News Release
October 2, 2014

Out of an abundance of caution, Texas and Dallas Countyhealth officials have ordered four close family members of the Dallas Ebolapatient to stay home and not have any visitors to prevent the potential spreadof disease. 

“We have tried and true protocols to protect the public andstop the spread of this disease,” said Dr. David Lakey, Texas healthcommissioner. “This order gives us the ability to monitor the situation in themost meticulous way.”

The local health department had previously instructed thefamily to stay home, but a strict public health control order is needed toensure compliance. Ebola is not contagious until symptoms appear. The familymembers do not have symptoms at this time.

The orders were hand delivered to the family membersWednesday evening by local health officials. The orders legally require thefamily to stay at home and not have any visitors without approval from thelocal or state health department until at least Oct. 19. The order is in placeuntil the incubation period has passed and the family is no longer at risk ofhaving the disease.

The order requires the family to be available to provideblood samples and agree to any testing required by public health officials andto immediately report any symptoms to Dallas County Health and Human Services.Symptoms include fever above 100.5 degrees, headache, nausea, diarrhea orabdominal pain. 

Texas law allows the state health department and thelocal health authority to issue control measures to a person who is ill with,has been exposed to, or is the carrier of a communicable disease. (Health andSafety Code §81.083). Control measures by law can include isolation, quarantineand preventive therapy. If a person does not follow these orders, they can beenforced by the courts, and the person can face criminal charges.

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State Health Department Media Contact:Carrie Williams, 512-776-7119, carrie.williams@dshs.state.tx.us

Dallas County Contact: Dallas County JudgeClay Lewis Jenkins, 214-653-7949, Clay.Jenkins@dallascounty.org

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