The Biden administration has mandated that all travellers from Uganda land at five U.S. airports for health screenings as an Ebola outbreak in Africa worsens.
The U.S. State Department announced the airports in a health alert as JFK International Airport in New York, Washington Dulles International Airport in Washington, D.C., Newark Liberty International Airport in New Jersey, Chicago O’Hare International Airport, and Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport.
According to The Washington Post, which cited an unnamed government official, passengers who have been in Uganda during the previous 21 days—the period during which the Ebola virus might incubate—will have their temperatures checked when they land. Health experts from the state and locality will monitor the travellers for 21 days after their arrival.
According to the Post, three airports receive the majority of the 145 persons arriving from Uganda each day. There are no flights that go from Uganda to the US directly.
No suspected, probable, or confirmed cases of Ebola have been recorded in the United States, and the risk of the disease spreading within the country is currently minimal. To date, infections in this epidemic have only been confirmed in Uganda. All passengers, including U.S. citizens, legal permanent residents, and those in possession of visas (including diplomatic and official visas), are subject to the additional screening, according to the State Department health advisory.
According to the CDC, 44 confirmed cases, 10 confirmed deaths, and 20 probable deaths from Ebola have been reported in Uganda as of October 6; the country’s health minister announced an epidemic on September 20. The Sudan virus, for which there is no FDA-approved vaccination, is what is causing the outbreak.
A person can contract the Ebola virus by coming into touch with contaminated objects or bodily fluids from an infected person. Fever, headache, pain in the muscles and joints, exhaustion, appetite loss, gastrointestinal issues, and unexplained bleeding are other symptoms.
The World Health Organization reported at the time that the Democratic Republic of the Congo had an Ebola outbreak in April.