Risk of Exposure
In Africa, confirmed cases of Ebola HF have been reported in:
- Sierra Leone
- Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC)
- South Sudan
- Ivory Coast
- Republic of the Congo (ROC)
- South Africa (imported)
The natural reservoir host of ebolaviruses, and the manner in which transmission of the virus to humans occurs, remain unknown. This makes risk assessment in endemic areas difficult. With the exception of several laboratory contamination cases (one in England and two in Russia), all cases of human illness or death have occurred in Africa; no case has been reported in the United States.
During outbreaks of Ebola HF, those at highest risk include health care workers and the family and friends of an infected individual. Health care workers in Africa should consult the Infection Control for Viral Hemorrhagic Fevers In the African Health Care Setting [PDF - 2MB] to learn how to prevent and control infections in these setting. Medical professionals in the United States should consult the Interim Guidance for Managing Patients with Suspected Viral Hemorrhagic Fever in U.S. Hospitals [PDF - 60KB].