UPDATE: Isolated Lubbock Patient Does Not Have Ebola
[Updated 2:08 p.m.] According to University Medical Center Spokesperson Eric Finley, the patient isolated by the hospital does not have the Ebola virus.
Finley told KAMC that state officials have determined that the man does not have Ebola and an official test will not be performed. No further details were released, however KFYO has reached out to Finley for more information.
[Update 11:20 a.m.] Eric Finley with University Medical Center spoke about the reason for initiating the isolation protocol, clarifying that so far there is no evidence this is in fact Ebola.
"We certainly don't have any type of diagnosis at this point, and if any testing is done, especially for something like Ebola which a lot of people are asking about, that would take about 48 hours to get that done," said Finley.
"Its a precautionary matter," he added. "I do think it's very important to note that [University Medical Center employees] have been talking about this for several weeks now. We just had hospital-wide meetings this morning where we went over exactly what our protocols would be in a situation like this."
Lubbock Online reports that a police officer present at the patient's home during the response said that the man was exhibiting flu-like symptoms and had recently traveled to Africa's Ivory Coast.
Currently, the Ebola virus is affecting west African countries including Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea. The World Health Organization is dispatching teams to both Ivory Coast and Mali starting this weekend in an effort to lower the spread of the disease.
[Original story] Lubbock's University Medical Center responded to a sick person Thursday morning and due to the nature of their illness have initiated a patient isolation protocol.
According to EverythingLubbock, a UMC spokesperson cited ebola concerns as a reason for the action, which occurred in tandem with EMS and a hazmat team. The patient's symptoms or identity haven't been made public, however the spokesperson confirmed the patient's travel history was enough to initiate the protocol.
The location of the sick person was near Zenith Avenue and East Auburn Street.
All responding personnel, which includes EMS, firefighters and animal control officers, were required to undergo decontamination.
The next step will be assessing the patient. Should the patient's assessment be consistent with Ebola, UMC will reach out to the Lubbock Health Department. Then, the Texas Health Department will be notified, as only the department's officials can authorize an Ebola lab test.
On Wednesday, an Amarillo hospital enacted an emergency lockdown due to Ebola fears after a patient came in with flu-like symptoms. That patient said they've been in contact with someone who had recently visited Africa.
Two people have contracted Ebola in the U.S. this month -- both health care workers who treated Patient Zero, Thomas Eric Duncan.
Duncan passed away at Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital in Dallas on October 8.