African ship carries Malaria to Louisiana

Sick passengers aboard a ship which traveled from western Africa were quarantined and transported to West Jefferson Medical center on Wednesday. The ship was anchored in the Mississippi River and is now located in New Orleans. Several people were escorted off the ship by private boat operators and taken to shore. According to USA Today, one of the workers are reported to be in critical condition.

The Center of Disease Control, also known as the CDC, explained that Malaria is a disease carried by mosquitoes. The same symptoms are common to see when crew members travels across the ocean.

“ Were told by the CDC that it’s a case of Malaria, it’s not contagious, that proper precautions are being taken. We asked why they are being taken to West Jeff? And we were told by DHH and CDC that the shipping company has a contract with doctors that practice at West Jeff,” said Jefferson Parish President John Young.

Hospital spokesman Taslin Alfonso said the hospital may receive up to four crew members, plus a river pilot that boarded the ship. Extra precautions are being taken because of the Ebola risk, but CDC spokesman said the chances that the ill passengers have Ebola is “exceedingly low.”

Several CDC staffers are in New Orleans training local workers. The U.S. Coast Guard and the CDC are handling the case.

“Our doctors and staff are ready and we have instituted full safety precautions in the unlikely event that this turns out to be something of concern,” Alfonzo said.

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