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Live Updates: Dallas Nurse Nina Pham Is Declared Ebola-Free

The latest from BuzzFeed News on the response to Ebola in the United States. Previous coverage of the outbreak can be found here.

Last updated on October 24, 2014, at 12:45 p.m. ET

Posted on October 21, 2014, at 10:06 a.m. ET

Personal protective equipment training at Ft. Carson in Colorado Springs, Colo.
Rick Wilking / Reuters

Personal protective equipment training at Ft. Carson in Colorado Springs, Colo.

Latest Developments:

  • Dallas nurse Nina Pham is Ebola-free, NIH confirmed on Oct. 24.
  • New York City doctor Craig Allen Spencer tested positive for Ebola on Oct. 23 and is isolated at Bellevue Hospital.
  • The U.S. will monitor all travelers from Ebola-stricken nations in West Africa for 21 days, the CDC said.
  • Dallas nurse Amber Vinson is reported to be Ebola free.
  • The White House Ebola czar starts his job with meetings with the president and top officials.
  • A Red Cross official said the epidemic in West Africa will take four to six months to contain.
  • U.S. requires West Africa travelers to arrive at one of five airports.
  • CDC released new guidelines on protective gear.

Updates

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This post is no longer being updated. Go to this post for the latest news.

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Nina Pham said she feels "fortunate and blessed" after being discharged from the NIH Clinical Center in Maryland, Friday.

Pham thanked God, her family, friends and the medical staff. She also thanked Dr. Kent Brantley for his "selfless act of donating plasma to me."
videocast.nih.gov

Pham thanked God, her family, friends and the medical staff. She also thanked Dr. Kent Brantley for his "selfless act of donating plasma to me."

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Dallas nurse Nina Pham is Ebola-free, NIH confirmed.

BREAKING: Dallas Nurse, Ebola Patient Nina Pham Now Cured, NIH Says

Derek Wallbank@dwallbankFollow

BREAKING: Dallas Nurse, Ebola Patient Nina Pham Now Cured, NIH Says

10:46 AM - 24 Oct 14ReplyRetweetFavorite

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The New York Times confirmed Thursday that a doctor in New York City had tested positive for Ebola. New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio and Governor Andrew Cuomo planned a press conference at Bellevue Hospital Thursday night.

Breaking News: Patient in New York City Tests Positive for Ebola http://t.co/HepyZfhBTR

The New York Times@nytimesFollow

Breaking News: Patient in New York City Tests Positive for Ebola

http://t.co/HepyZfhBTR

5:28 PM - 23 Oct 14ReplyRetweetFavorite

ABC News confirmed the report.

BREAKING: Sickened doctor at NYC hospital has tested positive for Ebola, an official tells @ABC News - @JoshMargolin http://t.co/yjHFn7TyLi

ABC News@ABCFollow

BREAKING: Sickened doctor at NYC hospital has tested positive for Ebola, an official tells @ABC News - @JoshMargolin http://t.co/yjHFn7TyLi

5:36 PM - 23 Oct 14ReplyRetweetFavorite

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The man undergoing testing for Ebola in New York visited a bowling alley in Brooklyn on Wednesday.

We are aware of the reports that an individual who may possibly be infected with Ebola attended an event in Williamsburg last night.

brooklynbowl@brooklynbowlFollow

We are aware of the reports that an individual who may possibly be infected with Ebola attended an event in Williamsburg last night.

6:05 PM - 23 Oct 14ReplyRetweetFavorite

Brooklyn Bowl has not been contacted by authorities and has no further information.

brooklynbowl@brooklynbowlFollow

Brooklyn Bowl has not been contacted by authorities and has no further information.

6:05 PM - 23 Oct 14ReplyRetweetFavorite

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An exterior view of Bellevue Hospital in New York City.
Mike Segar / Reuters

An exterior view of Bellevue Hospital in New York City.

New York City hospital monitoring a potential Ebola patient

A doctor who recently returned from West Africa was transported to Bellevue Hospital in Manhattan on Thursday after he presented Ebola-like symptoms, the New York City Department of Health said in a statement.

The patient has a fever and gastrointestinal symptoms and returned from "one of the three countries currently facing the outbreak of this virus," the statement said. He or she returned to the United States less than 21 days ago, the virus' incubation period.

The patient, reported to be 33-year-old Craig Spencer , worked with Ebola patients with the organization Doctors Without Borders. He was transported from his Harlem apartment to Bellevue Hospital by an ambulance designed to deal with hazardous materials, according to the health department.

"The chances of the average New Yorker contracting Ebola are extremely slim," the department of health said in the statement. "Ebola is spread by directly touching the bodily fluids of an infected person. You cannot be infected simply by being near someone who has Ebola."

Doctors Without Borders released the following statement Thursday:

A person in New York City, who recently worked with Doctors Without Borders in one of the Ebola-affected countries in West Africa, notified our office this morning to report having developed a fever. As per the specific guidelines that Doctors Without Borders provides its staff on their return from Ebola assignments, the individual engaged in regular health monitoring and reported this development immediately. While at this stage there is no confirmation that the individual has contracted Ebola, Doctors Without Borders, in the interest of public safety and in accordance with its protocols, immediately notified the New York City Department of Health & Mental Hygiene, which is directly managing the individual's care. At this stage Doctors Without Borders will not be providing any further details about its colleague.

Bellevue is one of eight hospitals in New York state designated to treat Ebola patients.

vine.co
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Dallas nurse is reported to be Ebola-free.

Amber Vinson is approved to be moved out of isolation at Emory University Hospital in Atlanta, her family said on Wednesday.

"We are overjoyed to announce that, as of yesterday evening, officials at Emory University Hospital and the Centers for Disease Control are no longer able to detect virus in her body," the family said in the statement.

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President Obama held a meeting with Ebola Response Coordinator Ron Klain and members of his team on Wednesday.
Kevin Lamarque / Reuters

President Obama held a meeting with Ebola Response Coordinator Ron Klain and members of his team on Wednesday.

Obama said he is "cautiously more optimistic" that the chances of additional infections from Liberian traveler Thomas Eric Duncan are ebbing.

After a meeting Wednesday in the Oval Office, President Obama said he spoke to coworkers of the two infected nurses Wednesday at Texas Presbyterian Hospital in Dallas to commend them for their work, and reported that their "spirits were good."

"People were very proud of the work that they've done, and understandably so. Because as I've said before, when it comes to taking care of us and our families, nobody is more important than the frontline health workers and nurses in particular who so often are the ones who have immediate and ongoing contact with patients," he said. "And they're very proud of what they've done, and want to make sure that everybody understands how seriously they take their work and how important they consider their jobs to be."

But he said while he felt positive about the developments in the U.S. the situation in West Africa remains a concern. According to the World Health Organization on Wednesday, at least 4,869 have died of the virus and 9,915 are infected.

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Cameraman released from special hospital unit after being declared free of Ebola virus.

Ashoka Mukpo, who was declared free of Ebola Tuesday, was released from the bio-containment unit at Nebraska Medical Center where he had been receiving treatment.

"I feel profoundly blessed to be alive, and in the same breath aware of the global inequalities that allowed me to be flown to a U.S. hospital," Mukpo said in a statement.

Ashoka Mukpo is virus free and has been discharged from #NebraskaMedicine.

Nebraska Medicine@NebraskaMedFollow

Ashoka Mukpo is virus free and has been discharged from #NebraskaMedicine.

12:02 PM - 22 Oct 14ReplyRetweetFavorite

We'd like to thank Ashoka for being a wonderful patient. This is a team effort all around. We wish him & his family the very best.

Nebraska Medicine@NebraskaMedFollow

We'd like to thank Ashoka for being a wonderful patient. This is a team effort all around. We wish him & his family the very best.

12:03 PM - 22 Oct 14ReplyRetweetFavorite

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The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention increased its monitoring of people traveling to the U.S. from West African nations impacted by Ebola.

All travelers from Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea will be automatically monitored for 21 days upon arrival in the U.S., the CDC said. That will begin Monday.

The AP reported:

The program will start in six states: New York, Pennsylvania, Maryland, Virginia, New Jersey and Georgia.

CDC Director Tom Frieden says state and local health officials will check daily for fever or other Ebola symptoms.

Passengers will get kits to help them track their temperature and will be told to inform health officials daily of their status.

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Pharmaceuticals giant GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) has said it expects to have readied the first doses of its Ebola vaccine by late this year, Reuters reported.

The logo of GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) is seen on its office building in Shanghai.
Aly Song / Reuters

The logo of GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) is seen on its office building in Shanghai.

They also said they were looking to work alongside the rest of industry to increase the scale of production.

Speaking to reporters on Wednesday, Chief Executive Andrew Witty said: "I fully anticipate that the initial supply should be available before the year end."

"It will give WHO (World Health Organization) and other agencies a useful tool," he added. Witty said the GSK vaccine is likely to be the first to be deployed.

Johnson & Johnson are also developing a vaccine, and had previously said that drugs companies were looking at ways of working together to make millions of doses of Ebola vaccine available next year, Reuters reported.

GSK said collaboration with other drug manufacturers was important in removing potential bottlenecks in production and supply.

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8 Myths About The Ebola Outbreak

TL;DR: You won’t need to wear a hazmat suit to any cocktail parties any time soon.
Frederick A. Murphy / CDC / Kelly Oakes / BuzzFeed

TL;DR: You won’t need to wear a hazmat suit to any cocktail parties any time soon.

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Ebola "czar" Ron Klain starts his job today.

Ron Klain, then chief of staff to the Vice President, President Obama, and Cynthia Hogan, counsel to the vice-president, in the Oval Office on May 21, 2009.
Handout/The White House

Ron Klain, then chief of staff to the Vice President, President Obama, and Cynthia Hogan, counsel to the vice-president, in the Oval Office on May 21, 2009.

Wednesday marks Ron Klain's first day as the White House's Ebola "czar," according to the Associated Press.

Klain, a former chief of staff to Vice President Joe Biden, will meet with President Obama and other high-ranking aides this afternoon in the Oval Office. He'll also meet with other staffers leading the government's Ebola response both in the U.S. and in West Africa.

Meanwhile, a top Red Cross official said the Ebola outbreak in West Africa will likely be contained in four to six months, NBC News reported.

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The National Institutes of Health said Tuesday that Nina Pham, one of the nurses fighting Ebola, was in good condition.

Her condition had been upgraded from fair, the NIH said. Pham arrived at the NIH Clinical Center Special Clinical Studies Unit late Thursday from Dallas. On Wednesday, her condition had been listed as good by Texas Health. After she arrived at the NIH, officials on Friday said her condition was fair but would not specify what had changed, NBC reported.

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The cage in the lobby of Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital is being covered in posters and cards.

Got a little more info on the cage. Apparently they're going to cover it floor to ceiling w/ support letters, cards.

Jim Dalrymple II@JimDalrympleIIFollow

Got a little more info on the cage. Apparently they're going to cover it floor to ceiling w/ support letters, cards.

2:25 PM - 21 Oct 14ReplyRetweetFavorite

I asked the guy hanging the posters, "why a cage?" Guy: so we can hang things on both sides.

Jim Dalrymple II@JimDalrympleIIFollow

I asked the guy hanging the posters, "why a cage?" Guy: so we can hang things on both sides.

2:28 PM - 21 Oct 14ReplyRetweetFavorite

Me: "what is this [pointing at the cage] normally used for?" Poster hanging guy: "Sometimes we do a fundraiser for the jails."

Jim Dalrymple II@JimDalrympleIIFollow

Me: "what is this [pointing at the cage] normally used for?" Poster hanging guy: "Sometimes we do a fundraiser for the jails."

2:30 PM - 21 Oct 14ReplyRetweetFavorite

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Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital, where one man died of Ebola and two nurses were infected, set up a cage in its lobby. BuzzFeed News' Jim Darlymple is trying to find out why.

Texas Presbyterian Hospital has set up this cage in the lobby.

Jim Dalrymple II@JimDalrympleIIFollow

Texas Presbyterian Hospital has set up this cage in the lobby.

1:47 PM - 21 Oct 14ReplyRetweetFavorite

This is what it's like to be inside the cage at Texas Presbyterian Hospital.

Jim Dalrymple II@JimDalrympleIIFollow

This is what it's like to be inside the cage at Texas Presbyterian Hospital.

2:13 PM - 21 Oct 14ReplyRetweetFavorite

It's surrounded by posters expressing support for Ebola patients, including the two nurses w/ Ebola who worked here.

Jim Dalrymple II@JimDalrympleIIFollow

It's surrounded by posters expressing support for Ebola patients, including the two nurses w/ Ebola who worked here.

1:48 PM - 21 Oct 14ReplyRetweetFavorite

I asked why it was a cage. The info desk lady said they're going to hand the posters on the wires, but didn't have additional information.

Jim Dalrymple II@JimDalrympleIIFollow

I asked why it was a cage. The info desk lady said they're going to hand the posters on the wires, but didn't have additional information.

1:51 PM - 21 Oct 14ReplyRetweetFavorite

Me: so what is it? Hospital info lady: it's... I guess the best word is a cage. They were setting it up this morning.

Jim Dalrymple II@JimDalrympleIIFollow

Me: so what is it? Hospital info lady: it's... I guess the best word is a cage. They were setting it up this morning.

1:57 PM - 21 Oct 14ReplyRetweetFavorite

Worth nothing: The info lady is just a volunteer at the hospital. She's NOT an official spokeswoman or anything like that.

Jim Dalrymple II@JimDalrympleIIFollow

Worth nothing: The info lady is just a volunteer at the hospital. She's NOT an official spokeswoman or anything like that.

1:58 PM - 21 Oct 14ReplyRetweetFavorite

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Anyone flying to the U.S. from West Africa has to land at one of five airports, federal officials said Tuesday.

From the Department of Homeland Security:

Last week, with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, DHS implemented enhanced screening measures at five airports around the country – New York's JFK, Newark, Dulles, Atlanta and Chicago. Passengers flying into one of these airports from flights originating in Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea are subject to secondary screening and added protocols, including having their temperature taken, before they can be admitted into the United States. These airports account for about 94 percent of travelers flying to the United States from these countries. At present there are no direct, non-stop commercial flights from Liberia, Sierra Leone or Guinea to any airport in the United States.

On Tuesday, DHS said all passengers from Liberia, Sierra Leone, or Guinea have to land at one of those five airports. "We are working closely with the airlines to implement these restrictions with minimal travel disruption," the agency said.

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Rwanda announced new screening procedures for travelers from the U.S. and Spain on Oct. 19.

Ironic some Americans want to ban West Africans bc of #ebola, Rwanda subjects US travelers for extra screening. hmmm

Jeneba Jalloh Ghatt@JenebaSpeaksFollow

Ironic some Americans want to ban West Africans bc of #ebola, Rwanda subjects US travelers for extra screening. hmmm

6:19 PM - 20 Oct 14ReplyRetweetFavorite

From the Rwandan Embassy:

Visitors who have been in the United States or Spain during the last 22 days are now required to report their medical condition—regardless of whether they are experiencing symptoms of Ebola—by telephone by dialing 114 between 7:00 a.m. and 8:00 p.m. for the duration of their visit to Rwanda (if less than 21 days), or for the first 21 days of their visit to Rwanda.

The government will continue to check visitors' temperatures. Travelers will also be required to fill out a detailed questionnaire concerning whether they have symptoms of Ebola and the countries they visited in the past 22 days.

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A CDC official laid out a five-point plan for health care facilities that may have to deal with an Ebola patient.

"Step 5: There needs to be an oversight of practice." - @CDCgov #ebolaeducation #EbolaSafetySteps See all 5:

1199SEIU-UHWE@1199SEIUFollow

"Step 5: There needs to be an oversight of practice." - @CDCgov #ebolaeducation #EbolaSafetySteps

See all 5:

11:06 AM - 21 Oct 14ReplyRetweetFavorite

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Barbara Smith — a registered nurse with Mount Sinai Medical Health Systems, St. Luke's, and Roosevelt Hospitals in New York — demonstrates putting on personal protective equipment during an Ebola educational session for health care workers at the Jacob Javits Convention Center in New York.
Mike Segar / Reuters

Barbara Smith — a registered nurse with Mount Sinai Medical Health Systems, St. Luke's, and Roosevelt Hospitals in New York — demonstrates putting on personal protective equipment during an Ebola educational session for health care workers at the Jacob Javits Convention Center in New York.

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New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio said, "New Yorkers can get through anything thrown at us."

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New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo said New York has an advantage in dealing with Ebola by watching what happened in Dallas.

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Thousands of health care workers in New York will undergo Ebola training Tuesday.

It's a packed house, as thousands of health care workers gather for #EbolaTraining with @CDCgov and other experts.

GNYHA@GNYHAFollow

It's a packed house, as thousands of health care workers gather for #EbolaTraining with @CDCgov and other experts.

9:56 AM - 21 Oct 14ReplyRetweetFavorite

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention officials will demonstrate protection techniques according to new guidelines for treating Ebola patients at a massive training session at the Javits Center in New York City.

The educational session is hosted by the Greater New York Hospital Association (GNYH) and health care union 1199SEIU.


This is a developing story. Check back for updates and follow BuzzFeed News on Twitter.

Bellevue is one of eight hospitals in New York state designated to treat Ebola. A previous version of this post misstated that it was one of five hospitals in the country designated to treat Ebola.