Ebola: General Information

Ebola is a severe, often fatal disease that affects humans and some animals (monkeys, gorillas and chimpanzees). It is caused by the Ebola virus.

Ebola was first discovered in 1976 in Africa, near the Ebola River in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Currently, there is a large Ebola outbreak in Guinea in West Africa. Visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC’s) website for the most up-to-date information on the Ebola outbreak. The first-ever U.S. case of Ebola was diagnosed in late September, when a patient who had traveled from West Africa to Texas became sick.

Facts About Ebola

NYC Case

On October 23, 2014, a healthcare worker who returned from Guinea to New York City tested positive for Ebola. The patient was treated at Bellevue Medical Center in Manhattan and is now free of the virus. He was discharged on November 11, 2014 and poses no public health risk. Public health officials are actively monitoring the health of three of his contacts.

New Yorkers should feel free to go about their usual routines. New York City is taking all necessary precautions to ensure the health and safety of all New Yorkers, and the chances of the average New Yorker getting Ebola are extremely low. Read the Health Department’s Press Releasesfor up to date statements and press releases about Ebola in New York City.

If you visited one of the affected countries and develop fever or other symptoms within 21 days after leaving that country, call 911 right away. You will receive help regardless of immigration status or ability to pay. Make sure to tell medical staff about your travel history and if you had direct contact with a person who might have had Ebola. For more information, call 311.