Boy, 5, who traveled to West Africa tests NEGATIVE for Ebola at Bellevue Hospital

A 5-year-old Bronx boy hospitalized with Ebola symptoms tested negative for the deadly disease Monday.

The test results means New York City still has just one confirmed case of the dreaded disease — and the Soundview section, where the boy lives with his family, can breathe a big sigh of relief.

But the boy, who recently returned from Ebola-wracked West Africa, won’t be released from Bellevue Hospital just yet.

“Out of an abundance of caution, further negative Ebola tests are required on subsequent days to ensure that the patient is cleared,” the city health department and the NYC Health and Hospitals Corp. said in a joint statement.

“The patient will also be tested for common respiratory viruses. The patient will remain in isolation until all test results have returned.”

Earlier, city health commissioner Dr. Mary Travis Bassett reported that the boy had a “low grade” fever when his temperature was taken at 7 a.m. — but “no clear exposure to Ebola.”

Before the results were announced, Mayor de Blasio urged calm and said the boy was with his mom, who sources said is 40-years-old.

“The child at first did not appear to have any symptoms,” the mayor said. “The fact that the mother shows no symptoms at all is a very encouraging sign.”

The boy had been visiting relatives in Guinea for month with his family and returned home on Moroccan Airlines early Saturday, landing at Kennedy Airport, sources said.

The 5-year-old Bronx boy is taken into Bellevue Hospital to be tested for Ebola.

“It’s scary,” said Clara Gonzalez, 59. “If I go out, I ain’t going to touch the door. I don’t want to take any chances. They say it’s not airborne, but better safe than sorry.”

Some residents were wearing blue rubber gloves as they left the building.

“Of course I’m scared,” said 72-year-old Flor Telonn. “I have a son coming home from the hospital soon with heart problems.”

State Sen. Rev. Ruben Diaz, who represents the area, fanned more paranoia over a disease that experts have repeatedly said can only be caught from direct exposure to the bodily fluids of an infected person.

“They say that this is an infection that is not airborne, but I see everybody covering themself from top to bottom,” he said. “And I think they’re hiding something. I don’t think they’re telling us the complete truth. I think they know something we don’t know.”

Over at nearby Public School 195-196, which the Bronx boy attends kindergarten, city workers passed out “Understanding Ebola” leaflets aimed at setting people straight.

“He’s got other relatives who also go to the school,” said Wander Rosario, 25, whose 5-year-old son, Josiel, is a classmate of the boy. “You would expect the school to close.”

“It’s scary,” chimed in Josiel.

 

The following two tabs change content below.
Dan Mullin is an active writer and editor for the Pluto Daily who covered the 2014 Ebola Outbreak. Mullin attended the Wake Forest School of Medicine before leaving to pursue his lifelong science goal of allowing humans to live forever via a computer/brain transfer.