Local health officials briefed on Ebola protocols

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ST. LOUIS (KTVI) - Missouri health professionals attended a statewide meeting Tuesday (Oct. 7) in Jefferson City to prepare for a potential Ebola outbreak in the state.

Pam Walker, St. Louis City Health Director, said the overlying theme of the meeting was if a doctor, nurse or first responder feels they have come in contact with someone showing symptoms of Ebola, they should contact the local health department.

There have been more than 8,000 confirmed cases of Ebola virus in West Africa, according the CDC, but only one case in the United States.

The only way to contract the virus is direct exposure to bodily fluids of someone who has symptoms, according to Dr. Jeffrey Lowell, Professor of Surgery and Pediatrics at Washington University. He said as a result, the likelihood of the virus spreading in the U.S. is minimal.