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Cruise Ship Loses Power In Gulf Of Mexico

A Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital health worker has been placed in isolation on a Carnival cruise ship amid fear that the individual might have had contact with Ebola specimens.

The woman, who has not been identified, shows no signs of illness. Carnival says the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention notified them of the passenger, who is a lab supervisor at the Dallas hospital. The cruise ship, with a capacity for more than 4,000 passengers and 1,000 crew members, is on a seven-night cruise to the Caribbean.

According to the New York Times:

The employee and a traveling partner, who were not identified by name, agreed to remain isolated in a cabin aboard the vessel, the State Department said, and “out of an abundance of caution” efforts were underway to repatriate them. A physician aboard the cruise ship told the authorities that the employee was in good health.

News reports quoting an official statement from the government of Belize said the ship was in that country’s waters, but the authorities there refused to allow American officials to evacuate the passengers through their territory.

While United States officials “had emphasized the very low risk category in this case,” the statement said, “the government of Belize decided not to facilitate a U.S. request for assistance in evacuating the passenger through” an airport.

It has been 19 days since the unnamed woman was in the lab testing samples. Two nurses from the Dallas hospital have already tested positive for the virus.

Obama To Fight Ebola

Meanwhile, President Obama authorized the Pentagon to call up military reservists to fight the largest Ebola outbreak in history.

From Politico:

The president issued an executive order and a letter to Congress that said he’d deemed it “necessary to augment the active armed forces of the United States for the effective conduct of Operation United Assistance, which is providing support to civilian-led humanitarian assistance and consequence management support related to the Ebola virus disease outbreak in West Africa.”

“The authorities that have been invoked will ensure the Department of Defense can properly sustain the military operations required in this effort,” Obama told House and Senate leaders in his letter.

So far, about 540 U.S. active duty troops are in Liberia to aid their government and the CDC to fight the outbreak.

Another 4,000 troops could deploy to West Africa to help train healthcare workers, build Ebola treatment centers and contain the virus, according to Pentagon press secretary Rear Adm. John Kirby.

So far, the largest outbreak of Ebola has killed around 4,500 in Sierra Leone, Liberia, and Guinea.

SOURCE: Politico, NYT, USA Today | PHOTO CREDIT: Getty | VIDEO SOURCE: News Inc.

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