Officials search for homeless man after possible Ebola exposure

Dr. Edward Goodman, left, epidemiologist at Texas Health

Dr. Edward Goodman, left, epidemiologist at Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital Dallas, speaks as Dr. Mark Lester, Southeast Zone clinical leader for Texas Health Resources, looks on during a news conference on Tuesday, Sept. 30, 2014 about an Ebola infected patient they are caring for in Dallas. (Credit: AP / LM Otero)

DALLAS – Authorities in Dallas are searching for a homeless person who might have had contact with the lone Ebola patient diagnosed in the United States, officials said Sunday.

The person is not considered to be one of the 10 people who definitely had contact with Thomas Eric Duncan, who is in critical condition at a Dallas hospital. The man is part of a larger group of 38 people who may have been around Duncan when he was showing symptoms of the disease, officials said.

Dallas County Judge Clay Jenkins called the man a “low-risk individual.” Authorities had monitored him a day earlier but want to take his temperature regularly to make sure he doesn’t have a fever, a possible symptom of Ebola infection.

“We are doing this as a precautionary measure,” Jenkins said.

The group of 10 people is composed of seven health care workers and three family members or community contacts, said Dr. Tom Frieden, director of the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Duncan has been hospitalized for one week and was listed Saturday in critical condition. Frieden said Sunday that he was aware that Duncan’s health had “taken a turn for the worse,” but he declined to say what signs of poor health Duncan had shown.

Four members of a family who hosted Duncan in their northeast Dallas apartment are under isolation, though they have not shown symptoms of infection.


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