FARGO, N.D. — California health officials have given note that North Dakota is among six countries that may get Ebola medical waste in case the state has any material to incinerate.
In a note published last week, the California Department of Public Health listed North Dakota as one of six states where California pushes medical waste to be incinerated when onsite disposal isn’t available at health facilities.
Healthcare Environmental Services Inc., located at a nearby park in 1420 40th St. N. at Fargo, operates a medical waste incinerator which also accepts waste from other locations.
Calls for Healthcare Environmental Services on Tuesday afternoon Weren’t returned.
The company is owned by Sanford Health. A Sanford spokeswoman said it couldn’t immediately comment on the possible incineration of Ebola waste from California in the Fargo facility.
up to now, California has no known Ebola cases, according to the state health department, which spelled out its own interim guidelines for safe handling of medical waste in an alert to others and providers.
In another development, public health officials have been tracking two North Dakota residents who lately returned from countries in West Africa that are combating the Ebola epidemic.
Neither of the two inhabitants is running a temperature or showing any signs of an Ebola disease, which can include diarrhea, joint and muscle aches and abnormal bleeding.
“They’ve just recently traveled to the area,” said epidemiologist Michelle Feist of the North Dakota Health Department. “They pose no danger to the community.”
Health officials aren’t releasing information about where the two people live.
Public health officials in both Minnesota and South Dakota also are tracking residents in those countries who have recently visited Guinea, Liberia or Sierra Leone in West Africa, in which an epidemic of Ebola has killed about 5,000.
State health officials have been contacted by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention when a person is entering the United States from those countries through five major international airports.
“We are doing tracking,” explained Sam Brungardt, a public information officer for the Minnesota Health Department.
On Monday, Minnesota health officials declared that they were tracking one resident who’d traveled to West Africa, but the record of individuals to monitor is growing.
“It’s grown, and it’ll continue to grow as we get reports by the CDC,” Brungardt said. “There’s people that are returning from these three West African countries every day.”
up to now, not one of those being monitored for signs of fever with twice-daily temperature checks show any sign of disease, he said.
As a precaution, howeverthey will continue to be checked during the 21-day monitoring period, generally regarded as the incubation period for the Ebola virus.
South Dakota health officials also are tracking somebody who lately returned from West Africa, but isn’t showing symptoms.