Sacramento, CA., -- Sacramento County’s Public Health, Airport system, Emergency Medical Services, Emergency Services and a representative of local hospitals met with media on October 22nd to share what is being done locally to prepare for a possible case of Ebola in Sacramento County. Though Sacramento County’s risks are low, it was important to reassure the public that agencies have stringent infectious disease protocols and ongoing training in place. Experts also emphasized that there are no Ebola cases or suspect cases in Sacramento County today.
Experts continue to learn about Ebola and improve practices daily, and local agencies are refining and enhancing their protocols to insure they are prepared. Daily discussions are ongoing with the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and California State Department of Public Health (CDPH) to insure that service providers are acting and planning cohesively.
Sacramento County Public Health Officer, Dr. Kasirye, reiterated that Ebola is a viral disease that spreads from person-to-person by direct contact with a patient’s body fluids, like saliva, blood, vomit, urine, feces, and sweat or soiled objects. Ebola is not spread through the air, in food, or water. Only those with symptoms are contagious.
Public health has a coordinated monitoring system in place to identify possible cases, immediately isolate the patient, coordinate testing and diagnosis, and identify anyone who might have been exposed for monitoring and/or quarantine. Kasirye said that systems are in place for managing a suspect case and they continue to work with partners in healthcare to prepare and enhance protocols.
Sacramento County’s Emergency Medical Services has specific guidelines from CDC and CDPH and will continue to revise as needed. They are currently working with EMS Authority and other local EMS Agencies to revise and improve guidelines and are working with local EMS Providers to ensure that Sacramento County providers are prepared in advance, including:
· Dispatch Protocols
· Pre-hospital care and transport protocols
· Decontamination protocols.
With the CDC’s enhanced surveillance system, CDC is giving local governments information regarding passengers who are recently returning from any one of the three West African countries. There are two people in Sacramento County who are being monitored due to this enhanced surveillance system. There is no indication that these individuals were exposed to the virus at any time during their travel. However, they are self-monitoring, meaning that they are taking their own temperatures and reporting to, via phone, Public Health twice per day. They are considered low risk, they are not sick, they do not have fevers, and they are not infectious. They are not suspect cases.
Sacramento International Airport (SMF) is also coordinating with Public Health, airline partners, Customs and Border Protection, local fire and EMS agencies to be prepared and minimize the risk to the traveling public from communicable diseases. Aircraft Rescue Fire Fighters (ARFF) are on duty 24 hours-a-day, seven-days-a-week and airport firefighters are certified as emergency medical technicians and follow established protocols already in place. It is also important to note that SMF has no direct or non-stop service to the region of West Africa most identified with Ebola outbreak.
If you would like information on Ebola, visit the Department of Human Services’ webpage,
If anyone thinks they may have been exposed to Ebola or need information, they can call 916-875-5881 twenty four hours a day, seven days a week.