*updated at 1:30 p.m. on 10/15/2014
Dallas County Health and Human Services clears Dallas ISD Teacher of any Risk for Ebola Exposure
This morning, shortly after 9 a.m., a teacher at Saldivar Elementary reported to the school’s clinic with a low-grade fever. The teacher lives in the same apartment complex as a second healthcare provider who has been preliminarily diagnosed with Ebola overnight.
Out of an abundance of caution, the school nurse properly notified the district’s Health Services department and the Dallas County Health and Human Services department. DCHHS was provided details about the teacher and her condition, as well as her possible contact with the healthcare provider.
After reviewing the circumstances, the Dallas County Health and Human Services Department provided assurance that the teacher has absolutely no risk of having been exposed to the Ebola virus. The teacher has been referred to her doctor to address her symptoms.
Classes at Saldivar will continue as normal. A letter is being sent home to parents about the situation and a meeting for parents to hear from health officials has been scheduled.
Dallas ISD continues to be in close coordination with officials from the City of Dallas, Dallas County, and the Centers for Disease Control. The district will continue to provide updates as information becomes available.
Dallas ISD has provided a number of resources on its Health Updates page (www.dallasisd.org/healthupdates) and strongly encourages all parents, staff, and community members to educate themselves on Ebola.
Overnight it was announced that a second healthcare provider who treated Thomas Eric Duncan, the Dallas patient who died of the Ebola virus last week, has tested positive for the virus. The individual is in the hospital and isolated.
Dallas ISD has been able to confirm that the healthcare provider does not have any children in the district and has not been notified of any staff members or students having had contact with the second healthcare provider. It is important to note that the Ebola virus can only be transmitted when an infected individual is exhibiting symptoms.
The five Dallas ISD students who were possibly exposed to Mr. Duncan continue to exhibit no signs or symptoms of the virus and continue to be monitored twice daily. As noted in last week’s Dallas ISD Health Update, these students will not return to school until they have not exhibited signs or symptoms of the virus for 21 days.
According to the Texas Department of State Health Services and the CDC, if a person exposed to Ebola does not contract the virus within 21 days of exposure, it is definitive that they do not have the virus and therefore have a zero percent chance of contracting the virus (unless exposed again) or transmitting the virus to someone else. The district encourages students, parents, staff, and the community to learn about Ebola using the resources posted at www.dallasisd.org/healthupdates.
The city of Dallas, Dallas County Health and Human Services and the CDC notified residents in the area where the second healthcare provider lives and are already taking steps to clean all known potential areas of contact to ensure public health. For more information, call 311 or Dallas County Health and Human Services at 214-819-2004.
Dallas ISD continues to work closely with local, state, and federal health agencies and will continue to provide updates as information becomes available.