The test result was announced hours after federal officials announced new guidelines on Ebola monitoring in the U.S. and amid growing debate over whether health-care workers should be subject to mandatory, 21-day quarantines after returning to the U.S. from treating Ebola victims in West Africa.
Worldwide, there have been more than 4,900 deaths from Ebola, and another nearly 5,700 confirmed cases of the virus, making it the worst outbreak by far since the virus was first discovered in the mid-1970s.
The guidelines issued Monday by the Centers for Disease Control establish four different "risk" categories for people entering the United States from West Africa, and lay out recommendations for how those people should be monitored for signs of the often deadly virus.
The guidelines do not have the force of law, but CDC's recommendations often are closely followed by state and local health authorities.
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The guideline's highlights include calling for "voluntary isolation" for 21 days for people who are at high risk of contracting Ebola because of a needle stick or the use of inadequate protective gear while treating patients in the countries of Sierra Leone, Guinea or Liberia. The guidelines also call for active, daily, in-person health monitoring of those people, as well as others at "some" risk who treated Ebola victims without a breach in protective measures.
The CDC said high-risk returning health-care workers should not travel on public transportation or participate in activities with others until they clear a 21-day incubation period for Ebola. Frieden said, however, that "jogging in the park" would not be discouraged by the guidelines.
CDC said a "case-by-case" assessment should be made on whether to restrict movements and public activities for people at at "some" risk.
People at "low" risk, who have spent time in Ebola-afflicted countries, he said, should at least monitor their temperatures daily and report that via the phone to local health authorities, the CDC recommended Monday.
The fourth and final risk category introduced by CDC on Monday was "no risk," and applies to travelers who either have spent no time in West Africa, or who have been out of that region for longer than the 21-day incubation period. Those people require no monitoring, or limits on travel or public activities, CDC said.
Nearly 5,000 people have died in the three West African countries from Ebola, and another 5,000 were infected with the disease in the current outbreak, the worst by far on record in four decades.
Since Oct. 11, when the U.S. began monitoring temperatures of people arriving from West Africa on airplanes, there have been 46 health-care workers who had some level of risk under the new guidelines, said Dr. Tom Frieden, director of the CDC.
One of them, Dr. Craig Spencer, cleared screening at JFK Airport in New York City on Oct. 17, but developed a fever and tested positive for Ebola last Thursday, the day he was taken to Bellevue by medical workers in Haz-Mat gear.