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Ebola In The United States: What Happened When

Scenes from an outbreak: Ebola survivor Dr. Kent Brantly; Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital in Dallas; A worker cleans the apartment where Ebola victim Thomas Eric Duncan stayed in Dallas; experimental vaccine; the Carnival Magic cruise ship off Cozumel, Mexico. Jessica McGowan/Getty; Mike Stone/Getty Images; Jim Young/Reuters/Landov; Steve Parsons/AP; Angel Castellanos/AP hide caption

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Jessica McGowan/Getty; Mike Stone/Getty Images; Jim Young/Reuters/Landov; Steve Parsons/AP; Angel Castellanos/AP

Scenes from an outbreak: Ebola survivor Dr. Kent Brantly; Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital in Dallas; A worker cleans the apartment where Ebola victim Thomas Eric Duncan stayed in Dallas; experimental vaccine; the Carnival Magic cruise ship off Cozumel, Mexico.

Jessica McGowan/Getty; Mike Stone/Getty Images; Jim Young/Reuters/Landov; Steve Parsons/AP; Angel Castellanos/AP

When Ebola virus resurfaced in West Africa in December 2013, public health officials were hopeful that it could be contained, as it had been in past outbreaks.

But the virus continues to ravage communities in Africa and has now spread to the United States and Europe. The number of new cases in Africa make it likely that there will continue to be cases in the United States.

We've put together a timeline to track the U.S. response to Ebola, with the most recent events at the top. (International coverage by NPR continues at the Goats and Soda blog.) Check back, as we're regularly updating this list.

The Timeline Of Ebola In The U.S.

  • 11/17/2014: SURGEON FROM SIERRA LEONE DIES IN NEBRASKA

    Dr. Martin Salia poses for a photo in April 2014 at the United Methodist Church's Kissy Hospital outside Freetown, Sierra Leone. Salia who was diagnosed with Ebola on Monday, landed at Eppley Airfield in Omaha, Neb., on Nov. 17, 2014, and was being transported to the Nebraska Medical Center.
    Mike DuBose/United Methodist News Service/AP

    Dr. Martin Salia, 44, dies at Nebraska Medical Center after being evacuated Nov. 15 from Sierra Leone. It's not clear where he became infected with Ebola, since he wasn't working in an Ebola treatment unit. Salia is the second person to die of Ebola in the United States, after Thomas Eric Duncan.

  • 11/11/2014: NEW YORK DOCTOR RELEASED FROM HOSPITAL

    Spencer Platt/Getty Images
    Dr. Craig Spencer, who was diagnosed with Ebola in New York City last month, hugs New York Mayor Bill de Blasio at a news conference at New York's Bellevue Hospital after being declared free of the disease on November 11, 2014 in New York City. Spencer, a 33 year old Doctors Without Borders physician, was diagnosed last month after returning from treating patients in Guinea.
    Spencer Platt/Getty Images

    Craig Spencer, the first person in New York City to test positive for Ebola, is released from Bellevue Hospital Center (and gets a huge from Mayor Bill de Blasio.) Spencer, 33, treated Ebola patients in Guinea with Doctors Without Borders and was diagnosed with Ebola on Oct. 23.

  • 11/6/2014: TEXAS CALLS AN END TO MONITORING

    Joe Raedle/Getty Images
    Dr. David Lakey, Commissioner of the Texas Department of State Health Services, speaks to the media during an Ebola update on Oct. 6.
    Joe Raedle/Getty Images

    Texas stops monitoring people connected with the state's three Ebola cases, saying they are past the 21-day incubation period. "We're happy to reach this milestone, but our guard stays up," Dr. David Lakey, the state's health commissioner, says. The state also clears people who flew from Dallas to Cleveland with Ebola patient Amber Vinson.

  • 11/6/2014: PRESIDENT OBAMA SEEKS $6.2 BILLION FOR EBOLA RESPONSE

    Shawn Thew/EPA/Landov
    President Barack Obama meets with Ebola Response Coordinator Ron Klain (left), Health and Human Services Secretary Sylvia Burwell (center) and members of his national security and public health teams to receive an update on the Ebola response in the Roosevelt Room of the White House in D.C. on Nov. 4th, 2014.
    Shawn Thew/EPA/Landov

    President Obama asks Congress for $6.2 billion in emergency funds to help stop the Ebola outbreaks in West Africa and bolster screening and prevention efforts in the U.S. The money would go to the U.S. Agency for International Development, the Department of Health and Human Services and other federal agencies.

  • 11/5/2014: NYC PATIENT IS EXERCISING, PLAYING BANJO

    Andrew Burton/Getty Images
    A view of Bellvue Hospital on Oct. 27, 2014, where Dr. Craig Spencer, a doctor who has the ebola virus is being treated after working in West Africa. Spencer is being held in an isolation ward.
    Andrew Burton/Getty Images

    Dr. Craig Spencer is well enough to pass the time in the isolation unit at Bellevue Hospital by playing the banjo and riding a stationary bike, according to the New York Daily News. Spencer, 33, contracted Ebola while working with Doctors Without Borders in Guinea and tested positive on Oct. 23.

  • 10/31/2014 MAINE JUDGE FREES NURSE FROM HOME QUARANTINE

    Spencer Platt/Getty Images
    Kaci Hickox stands with her boyfriend Theodore Michael Wilbur as she gives a statement to the media in front of her home on Oct. 31, 2014 in Fort Kent, Maine.
    Spencer Platt/Getty Images

    The judge overturns an earlier temporary order aimed at keeping nurse Kaci Hickox quarantined at home for 21 days after returning from treating Ebola patients in West Africa. Hickox, who had defied the home quarantine, will self-monitor and coordinate her travels with state officials.

  • 10/30/14 NEW ORLEANS BANS EBOLA RESEARCHERS

    If you're an infectious disease researcher, the annual American Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene meeting is the place to be. But not this year. Louisiana decreed that researchers who had been in West African countries in the past three weeks "should NOT travel to New Orleans to attend the conference." Prospective attendees were told they'd be quarantined in a hotel for 21 days if they showed up, even if they'd had nothing to do with Ebola.

  • 10/28/2014: SECOND DALLAS NURSE RECOVERS

    Erik S. Lesser/EPA/Landov
    Ebola virus survivor Amber Vinson (Right) listens to Doctor Bruce Ribner, medical director of the Serious Communicable Disease Unit at Emory University Hospital during a press conference in Atlanta, on October 28, 2014. Vinson was one of two nurses who contracted Ebola while treating Liberian citizen Thomas Eric Duncan at Texas Health Presbyterian in Dallas, Texas.
    Erik S. Lesser/EPA/Landov

    Emory University Hospital in Atlanta releases Amber Vinson, 29, declaring her Ebola-free. She became infected while caring for Thomas Eric Duncan at Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital in Dallas, and was diagnosed with Ebola on Oct. 15.

  • 10/26/2014: NURSE RELEASED FROM 'INHUMANE' QUARANTINE

    In a Oct. 26, 2014 telephone interview with CNN, Kaci Hickox, the nurse quarantined at a New Jersey hospital because she had contact with Ebola patients in West Africa, said the process of keeping her isolated is "inhumane."
    University of Texas at Arlington/AP

    New Jersey officials release Kaci Hickox, a nurse who returned to the U.S. after treating Ebola patients in Sierra Leone, from quarantine in a tent outside Newark's University Hospital. Hickox, who called the quarantine "inhumane," hired a civil rights attorney to represent her. She will go home to Maine and serve out the quarantine there.

  • 10/24/2014: STATES IMPOSE MANDATORY QUARANTINES

    Mark Lennihan/AP
    New York Governor Andrew Cuomo (center) speaks at a news conference on Oct. 24, 2014 in New York, announcing a mandatory quarantine for people returning to the United States through airports in New York and New Jersey who are deemed "high risk."
    Mark Lennihan/AP

    New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo announces that his state will impose a mandatory 21-day quarantine on people arriving in the U.S. who have had direct contact with Ebola-infected individuals. New Jersey and Illinois announce their own quarantines. All affect people with no symptoms of infection.

  • 10/24/14 OBAMA CONGRATULATES NINA PHAM

    Olivier Douliery/Getty Images
    President Barack Obama meets with Dallas nurse Nina Pham in the Oval Office of the White House on Oct. 24, 2014 in Washington, D.C.
    Olivier Douliery/Getty Images

    Nurse Nina Pham goes to the White House, where she is greeted by President Obama. She says she's looking forward to going home to Dallas and her dog Bentley. "I feel fortunate and blessed to be standing here today."

  • 10/24/14: FIRST DALLAS NURSE DECLARED EBOLA-FREE

    Pablo Martinez Monsivais/AP
    Patient Nina Pham is hugged by Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases outside of National Institutes of Health (NIH) in Bethesda, Md., on Oct. 24, 2014. Pham, the first nurse diagnosed with Ebola after treating an infected man at a Dallas hospital is free of the virus.
    Pablo Martinez Monsivais/AP

    Nina Pham is hugged by Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, as she leaves the NIH hospital in Bethesda. Pham was diagnosed with Ebola on Oct. 12. The other Dallas nurse, Amber Vinson, is still being treated at Emory University Hospital, but physicians there say there is no longer Ebola in her blood.

  • 10/23/14: DOCTOR IN NEW YORK TESTS POSITIVE FOR EBOLA

    Mark Lennihan/AP
    Traffic passes Bellevue Hospital, on Oct. 24th, in New York. Dr. Craig Spencer, a resident of New York City and a member of Doctors Without Borders, was admitted to Bellevue Thursday and has been diagnosed with Ebola.
    Mark Lennihan/AP

    A physician with Doctors Without Borders, identified as Craig Spencer, tests positive for Ebola in New York City. He had recently returned from working with Ebola patients in Guinea. He is being treated in the isolation unit at Bellevue Hospital. His fiancee and two friends have been quarantined.

  • 10/22/2014: NBC PHOTOJOURNALIST RELEASED FROM HOSPITAL

    Sait Serkan Gurbuz/Reuters/Landov
    The Lied Medical Transplant Center (Left) is shown in Omaha, Nebraska, on Oct. 6, 2014.
    Sait Serkan Gurbuz/Reuters/Landov

    Ashoka Mukpo, a photojournalist who worked for NBC News, is released from the Nebraska Medical Center after being declared Ebola free. The 33-year-old contracted the virus while working in Liberia and was admitted to the hospital on Oct. 6. Mukpo is the latest patient to be released, following an anonymous aid worker who was infected in Africa and discharged on Oct. 19 from Emory University Hospital. Two nurses who were infected while treating Thomas Eric Duncan in Dallas remain hospitalized: Nina Pham at the National Institutes of Health in Bethesda, Md., and Amber Vinson at Emory University Hospital in Atlanta.

  • 10/20/14: QUARANTINE ENDS FOR DUNCAN'S FIANCEE

    Richard Drew/AP
    Nurse Belkys Fortune (left) and Teressa Celia, Associate Director of Infection Prevention and Control, pose in protective suits in an isolation room at Bellevue Hospital in N.Y. during a demonstration of procedures for possible Ebola patients, on Oct. 8, 2014.
    Richard Drew/AP

    The Ebola quarantine mandated for Louise Troh, the fiancee of Thomas Eric Duncan, her son and two nephews ends after 21 days. And CDC changes its guidelines for protective personal equipment to include covering all skin and using a "buddy system" when putting on or removing gear.

  • 10/19/2014: EBOLA PANIC STOPS CRUISE, SCHOOLS

    Angel Castellanos/AP
    The cruise ship Carnival Magic passes near Cozumel, Mexico, on Oct. 17, 2014. The Coast Guard said it had retrieved a blood sample from a Dallas health care worker aboard a cruise ship and being monitored for signs of Ebola.
    Angel Castellanos/AP

    The Caribbean cruise ship, Carnival Magic, returns to Galveston, Texas after being refused permission to dock in Cozumel, Mexico because it was carrying an employee of Texas Presbyterian hospital. The worker tested negative for Ebola on the ship's return. Earlier, classes were cancelled at schools in Texas and Ohio because staffers, students or parents had traveled on the same airplane as a nurse later diagnosed with Ebola.

  • 10/17/2014: WHITE HOUSE NAMES EBOLA CZAR

    Andrew H. Walker/Getty Images
    Ron Klain will be appointed as the new Ebola Czar by President Obama on Oct. 17, 2014.
    Andrew H. Walker/Getty Images

    Ron Klain, a former chief of staff for Vice Presidents Gore and Biden, is tapped to be the Obama administration's Ebola czar, coordinating the government's response to the virus. Klain, a lawyer, will report to Homeland Security Advisor Lisa Monaco and National Security Advisor Susan Rice.

  • 10/16/2014: NIH TAKES OVER CARE OF NURSE #1

    Jim Lo Scalzo/EPA/LANDOV
    Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Disease, testifies before a House Energy and Commerce Oversight and Investigations Subcommittee hearing on the US response to the ebola outbreak in D.C., on Oct. 16, 2014.
    Jim Lo Scalzo/EPA/LANDOV

    Nina Pham, the first Dallas nurse to become infected with Ebola, is being moved to the National Institutes of Health hospital in Bethesda, Md., this evening, Dr. Anthony S. Fauci, Director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, tells a congressional hearing. New tests of experimental vaccines and medications will be underway soon, he added.

  • 10/15/2014: SECOND DALLAS NURSE DIAGNOSED WITH EBOLA

    Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images
    Ebola patient Amber Vinson arrives by ambulance at Emory University Hospital on Oct. 15, 2014 in Atlanta, Georgia.
    Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

    Amber Joy Vinson, a 29-year-old nurse who worked at Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital in Dallas, is diagnosed with Ebola, the CDC reports. She reported having a fever the day before, when she flew back from Cleveland on a commercial flight. She helped care for Thomas Eric Duncan, who died of Ebola at the hospital on Oct. 8. Vinson is evacuated to Emory University Hospital, left, late on Oct. 15.

  • 10/13/2014: NBC CORRESPONDENT DR. NANCY SNYDERMAN BREAKS QUARANTINE

    Peter Kramer/NBC/NBC NewsWire via Getty Images
    Dr. Nancy Snyderman, left, with Savannah Guthrie on the "Today" show.
    Peter Kramer/NBC/NBC NewsWire via Getty Images

    NBC's medical correspondent Dr. Nancy Snyderman apologizes for breaking quarantine by going out for takeout food in New Jersey. She had worked with videographer Ashoka Mukpo, who was infected with Ebola in Liberia. Snyderman is shown at right during an earlier appearance on the Today show.

  • 10/12/2014: DALLAS NURSE DIAGNOSED WITH EBOLA

    Nina Pham, 26, who became the first person to contract the disease within the United States.
    Courtesy of tcu360.com/AP

    Nina Pham, a 26-year-old nurse who helped treat Ebola patient Thomas Eric Duncan, becomes the first person infected with Ebola in the United States.

  • 10/11/2014: AIRPORTS BEGIN SCREENING PASSENGERS FOR EBOLA

    Eduardo Munoz/Reuters/Landov
    Passengers make their way in a security checkpoint at the International JFK airport in New York on Oct. 11, 2014. Medical teams at New York's JFK airport, armed with Ebola questionnaires and temperature guns, began screening travelers from three West African countries on Saturday as U.S. health authorities stepped up efforts to stop the spread of the virus.
    Eduardo Munoz/Reuters/Landov

    Ebola screenings begin at New York's John F. Kennedy International Airport for passengers from Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea. Washington Dulles International Airport, Newark Liberty International Airport, Chicago O'Hare International Airport and Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport will follow. Most passengers arriving from West Africa come through these airports.

  • 10/8/2014: DALLAS PATIENT DIES

    Wilmot Chayee/AP
    This 2011 photo provided by Wilmot Chayee shows Thomas Eric Duncan, right, with friend Wilmot Chayee at a wedding in Ghana. Duncan, who became the first patient diagnosed in the U.S with Ebola, has been kept in isolation at a hospital since Sunday, Sept. 28, 2014. He was listed in serious but stable condition.
    Wilmot Chayee/AP

    Thomas Eric Duncan dies of Ebola at Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital in Dallas at age 42. He had traveled from Liberia to visit relatives.

  • 10/2/2014: AMERICAN JOURNALIST IN LIBERIA TESTS POSITIVE FOR EBOLA

    Dave Weaver/AP
    An ambulance transports Ashoka Mukpo, who contracted Ebola while working in Liberia, to the Nebraska Medical Center's specialized isolation unit on Oct. 6, 2014, in Omaha, Neb., where he will be treated for the deadly disease.
    Dave Weaver/AP

    Ashoka Mukpo, a freelance photojournalist working for NBC News in Liberia, tests positive for Ebola. He is returned to the United States and is taken to Nebraska Medical Center in Omaha, left, for treatment.

  • 10/1/2014: RELATIVES OF DALLAS PATIENT ARE PLACED UNDER QUARANTINE

    Tom Pennington/Getty Images
    The Ivy Apartments, where the confirmed Ebola virus patient was staying with family members, is seen on Oct. 1, 2014 in Dallas, Texas.
    Tom Pennington/Getty Images

    Texas authorities place relatives of Ebola patient Thomas Eric Duncan under quarantine in their apartment, left. They're later moved to a private house and the apartment is decontaminated.

  • 9/30/2014: FIRST U.S. EBOLA CASE IS CONFIRMED IN DALLAS, TEXAS

    Mike Stone/Getty Images
    A man diagnosed with the Ebola virus this week is being treated at Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital in Dallas. The patient recently traveled to Dallas from Liberia.
    Mike Stone/Getty Images

    Officials at Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital in Dallas say Thomas Eric Duncan has been diagnosed with Ebola. Duncan arrived in Dallas from Liberia on Sept. 20, and had gone to the hospital on Sept. 26 with a fever and stomach pain but was sent home. He returned to the hospital much sicker on Sept. 28 and was admitted.

  • 9/16/2014: PRESIDENT OBAMA OFFERS 3,000 TROOPS IN FIGHT AGAINST EBOLA

    Mandel Ngan/AFP/Getty Images
    President Obama spoke Tuesday about the U.S. plan to fight the Ebola epidemic in West Africa, speaking at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The White House plan reportedly includes deploying 3,000 U.S. military personnel and training health care providers in Liberia.
    Mandel Ngan/AFP/Getty Images

    President Obama outlines an increased response to fight Ebola, including building a military command center in Liberia and sending 3,000 U.S. troops to the region.

  • 9/4/2014: SCIENTISTS PREDICT THAT EBOLA WILL COME TO THE U.S.

    An analysis of international air travel shows that it's likely that someone infected with Ebola will board a commercial flight to the U.S. in the next few months.

  • 9/2/2014: THIRD AMERICAN WORKER TESTS POSITIVE FOR EBOLA

    Courtesy of SIM
    Dr. Rick Sacra, 51, has been working on and off in Liberia for 15 years. He went back to Monrovia in August to help deliver babies. It's still unknown how he caught Ebola.
    Courtesy of SIM

    Dr. Rick Sacra, a Massachusetts doctor working in Liberia for the Christian aid group SIM, tests positive for Ebola. He later recovers at a hospital in Nebraska, receiving transfusions of blood plasma from fellow survivor Dr. Kent Brantly.

  • SEPTEMBER 2014: EXPERIMENTAL EBOLA VACCINE TESTED ON HUMANS

    Steve Parsons/AP
    Professor Adrian Hill, Director leader of the trials for the experimental Ebola vaccine holds a vial of the vaccine in Oxford, England on Sept. 17, 2014. The vaccine was developed by the U.S. National Institutes of Health and GlaxoSmithKline and targets the Zaire strain of Ebola, the cause of the ongoing outbreak in West Africa. A trial of the same vaccine has already begun in the U.S.
    Steve Parsons/AP

    Drug company GlaxoSmithKline and the National Institutes of Health begin testing an Ebola vaccine on humans. The initial test involves 20 healthy volunteers.

  • 8/21/2014: EBOLA PATIENTS ARE RELEASED FROM HOSPITAL

    Jessica McGowan/Getty Images
    Dr. Kent Brantly (center), stands with his wife, Amber Brantly, during a press conference announcing his release from Emory Hospital on Aug. 21, 2014 in Atlanta, Georgia.
    Jessica McGowan/Getty Images

    Dr. Kent Brantly, left with his wife, Amber, is released from Emory University Hospital after recovering from Ebola. Nancy Writebol, who also became infected while working in Africa, is released, too. Both were treated with the experimental monoclonal antibody drug ZMapp.

  • 8/7/2014: FDA OKS EXPERIMENTAL DRUG FOR USE AGAINST EBOLA

    Ben Nelms/Reuters/Landov
    Tekmira Pharmaceuticals Corporation's head office is pictured in Burnaby, British Columbia on Aug. 5, 2014. Tekmira, based in Canada, was one of a few companies to have developed Ebola treatments advanced enough to be tested on people.
    Ben Nelms/Reuters/Landov

    The U.S. Food and Drug Administration allows use of an experimental drug, TKM-Ebola, in Ebola patients even though it hasn't gone through clinical trials.

  • 8/5/2014: EBOLA SCARE AT NEW YORK HOSPITAL

    Stan Honda/AFP/Getty Images
    Television trucks converged on Mount Sinai Hospital in New York on Monday after it announced that it was screening a patient for Ebola virus.
    Stan Honda/AFP/Getty Images

    New York's Mount Sinai Hospital, left, makes the news after screening a patient for Ebola. It turns out to be a false alarm.

  • 8/5/2014: SECOND EBOLA PATIENT ARRIVES IN THE U.S.

    Nancy Writebol, who contracted Ebola while volunteering for the missionary group SIM in Liberia, is evacuated to Emory University Hospital for treatment.

  • 8/2/2014: FIRST EBOLA PATIENT ARRIVES IN THE U.S.

    Dr. Kent Brantly, shown treating Ebola patients in Liberia at left, arrives at Emory University Hospital in Atlanta for treatment on Aug. 2. Brantly was diagnosed with Ebola on July 26. He was working for the missionary group Samaritan's Purse.

  • 3/31/2014: CDC SENDS A TEAM TO GUINEA

    Jessica McGowan/Getty Images
    Exterior of the Center for Disease Control (CDC) headquarters is seen on Oct. 13, 2014 in Atlanta, Georgia.
    Jessica McGowan/Getty Images

    The CDC sends five people to Guinea to assist the Ministry of Health in dealing with the Ebola outbreak there. Other Americans are in West Africa working for nonprofit groups like Doctors Without Borders and Samaritan's Purse.

  • 1994: RICHARD PRESTON WRITES 'THE HOT ZONE'

    Random House
    The cover of The Hot Zone.
    Random House

    Richard Preston's riveting account of the 1989 Reston, Va., Ebola outbreak in laboratory monkeys introduces Ebola to popular American culture.

  • 1989: EBOLA ARRIVES IN THE UNITED STATES

    Researchers from the U.S. Army Medical Research Institute of Infectious Diseases are shocked to discover that a strain of Ebola virus was killing laboratory monkeys at a quarantine facility in Reston, Va., just outside Washington, D.C. The outbreak ended when the monkeys were euthanized. No humans fell ill, though several tested positive for the virus.