WORCESTER (CBS) — A patient with a history of travel to and from West Africa is being isolated at a Worcester hospital with a possible case of Ebola, officials said Saturday.

That patient was identified as Dr. Rick Sacra of Holden by his missionary group later Saturday. Sacra was recently released from a Nebraska hospital after being declared Ebola-free, and doctors say the chances of a relapse are “extremely low” but are monitoring him under Centers For Disease Control guidelines.

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UMass Memorial Medical Center officials said that doctors do not suspect Ebola, but are isolating Sacra as a precaution.

“Though our physicians believe this is likely not Ebola, in the interest of safety, we are isolating the patient until we have confirmation,” the hospital said in a statement.

The hospital said it is working with the Centers for Disease Control and the Massachusetts Department of Public Health.

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“UMass Memorial Medical Center is well equipped to handle infectious disease assessment and containment,” the hospital said. “There is no risk to the general public and all appropriate precautions are being taken to protect the patient’s caregivers.”

State health officials said Friday that Massachusetts hospitals have treated several patients for suspect cases of Ebola in recent months, but the deadly virus was ruled out in each instance.


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