Hospitals shut down after Ebola outbreak
San Francisco, California (AP) Hospitals in California have shut down following an outbreak of the Ebola virus that has killed at least 1,300 people in the Bay Area and infected hundreds of thousands of others, and health officials said Sunday that the region will likely see an additional 500 cases this week.
San Francisco County Health Officer Scott Kubly told the San Francisco Chronicle that the county is preparing to shut down its emergency rooms and public health centers for several days and will likely start a public awareness campaign in the coming days.
Kubly said a total of 1,700 health care workers, staff and volunteers have been infected in San Francisco and that at least 150 of those infected are hospitalized.
The number of confirmed and suspected cases is expected to climb to as many as 5,500 over the next week, Kubly and others have said.
San Jose, the state’s largest city, is expecting at least 200 new cases this weekend, Kublly said.
“There is a tremendous amount of uncertainty right now and we don’t know what the future holds for the region,” he said.
Officials in Texas, which has experienced its own Ebola outbreak, said Sunday they have been working closely with local officials and health care providers to ensure public health care remains available for those who are sick and to coordinate the treatment of those who have been diagnosed.
The outbreak has killed more than 4,500 people in West Africa and forced more than 5 million people to flee their homes, including more than a million children.
It has also spread to Canada, the United States and Europe.