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Who is at risk for getting Ebola?

Healthcare providers caring for Ebola patients and family and friends in close contact with Ebola patients are at the highest risk of getting sick because they may come in contact with infected blood or body fluids. Ebola also can be spread through direct contact with objects (like clothes, bedding, needles, syringes/sharps or medical equipment) that have been contaminated with infected body fluids. Additionally, people can become sick with Ebola after coming in contact with infected wildlife. For example, in Africa, Ebola may spread as a result of handling bushmeat (wild animals hunted for food) and contact with infected bats.

It is also possible that Ebola could be spread through sex or other contact with semen from men who have survived Ebola. Until more information is known, avoid contact with semen from a man who has had Ebola. It is not known if Ebola can be spread through sex or other contact with vaginal fluids from a woman who has had Ebola.

CDC and other public health partners are continuing to study Ebola transmission and will share what is known as it becomes available.

Dr. Darria Gillespie, MD
Emergency Medicine Specialist

The number one risk factor for contracting Ebola is direct contact with an infected patient. In this video, I will explain the precautions you can take to protect yourself.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.