Watch CBS News

MGH Confirms Patient Has Malaria, Not Ebola

BOSTON (CBS) – A patient at Massachusetts General Hospital suspected of possibly having Ebola has tested negative for the deadly virus.

MGH confirmed just before 1 p.m. on Wednesday that the initial test for Ebola is negative. The patient did test positive for malaria, the hospital said.

More tests will be conducted on the patient to definitively rule out Ebola and other diseases.

Hospital officials said the patient had been undergoing monitoring by the Boston Public Health Commission after working in Liberia. The patient was not working in a medical capacity while in West Africa.

"In accordance with Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines, and out of an abundance of caution for our patients, their families and our staff, the hospital is continuing to follow the highest possible safety precautions. The patient is in good spirits and remains in a specially prepared isolated area within the hospital," Mass General said in a statement.

The unidentified person was admitted to Mass General Tuesday afternoon for a clinical evaluation.

The hospital said the patient met the Centers for Disease Control criteria of having traveled to an area where Ebola is present and was showing potential symptoms of the virus.

The patient spent the night in a specially prepared area of the hospital and diagnostic testing was performed.

"We feel extremely confident that all of our patients, all of our staff, all of our visitors are perfectly safe," Dr. Paul D. Biddinger of Mass General Hospital said on Tuesday night. "There is no concern no matter what the outcome of this clinical investigation will be."

No details have been released about the patient.

In October, state health officials said several suspected Ebola patients were treated in Massachusetts, but the deadly virus was ruled out in each case.

West Africa is currently suffering the worst Ebola outbreak in history, with more than 17,100 illnesses and at least 6,000 deaths so far.

There have been four cases of Ebola diagnosed in the United States.

The outbreak in West Africa has caused at least 6,000 deaths so far.


View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.