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'Close to Home': Neighbors of Dallas Ebola Patient Concerned

Early morning visit from HazMat team, informational pamphlets follow health care worker's positive test for Ebola.

Many residents of a Dallas neighborhood were woken early Sunday morning by a knock on their doors from city officials handing out Ebola information pamphlets and informing them that someone who lives nearby had tested positive for Ebola. "It's one thing to be in Dallas but for it to be next door, it’s like really close to home," the unidentified patient's next door neighbor, Chelsea Esposito, told NBC Dallas-Fort Worth. Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital announced Sunday morning that a health care worker who treated Ebola victim Thomas Eric Duncan had tested positive for the disease. Duncan died Wednesday. The Centers for Disease Control in Atlanta confirmed the health care worker tested positive for Ebola — the first known case of the virus being transmitted in the U.S.

Dallas Mayor Mike Rawlings said at a news conference that a Dallas Fire and Rescue Hazmat Team decontaminated any open areas of the apartment complex where the patient lived on the 3700 block of Marquita Avenue in Dallas and the patient's car. Rawlings said police were stationed nearby to make sure no one enters the complex. The health care worker was in close contact with only one person while she was symptomatic, and that person has been placed in isolation, said Dr. Daniel Varga of Texas Health Resources. The healthcare provider does not have any children, according to a statement from Dallas Independent School District.

Read More Coverage from NBC Dallas-Fort Worth

Rawlings said that neighbors were informed of the patient's proximity and given information about Ebola "so they will not be afraid." The mayor personally visited the neighborhood, according to NBC DFW. "They gave us really good information on Ebola," said Esposito, but "I want to know more about who she is and how exactly they think she got it."

CDC Director Dr. Thomas Frieden said Sunday that a "breach in protocol" while treating Duncan led to the caregiver testing positive for Ebola, and warned that other health care workers could be at risk of infection.



— Elisha Fieldstadt and Amy Calvin