Thomas Eric Duncan, the first man in the U.S. to be diagnosed with Ebola, is in critical condition, said Candace White, Texas Health Presbyterian spokeswoman on Saturday. He had previously been reported in serious condition.
According to U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Duncan is now in intensive care.
After coming into contact with Duncan, 10 people are at higher risk of contracting the virus, said health care officials. Those individuals are being closely monitored, but none have shown symptoms of Ebola.
In all 50 people are being monitored, 40 of which are considered low-risk, said Dr. Lakey, Commissioner of Texas department of state health services.
Among the high-risk 10 are likely Duncan’s girlfriend, Louise, her son and her two nephews, who had been in Duncan’s apartment before his admission to the hospital.
They were moved to an undisclosed location on Friday, where they will be monitored until Oct. 19. The time between exposure to Ebola and the first signs of symptoms ranges from two to 21 days.
“We have already gotten well over 100 inquiries of possible patients,” said director of the Centers of Disease Control and Prevention Dr. Tom Friedan, “We’ve assessed every one of those ... and just this one patient has tested positive.”
On Sept. 20 Duncan landed in the U.S. from Liberia, began feeling ill and went to Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital on Sept. 25. He was then sent home with antibiotics.
Duncan returned to the hospital three days later and was immediately isolated. A blood test on Tuesday confirmed Duncan to be the first case of Ebola diagnosed in the U.S.
Louise said that during the initial hospital visit, Duncan told doctors of his fever and abdominal pain as well as his travel history from Liberia, but was still released.
Lakey said health care officials must “learn from experience” to communicate travel history of patients.
Duncan traveled to the U.S. so that he and Louise could get married, alleged Mark Wingfield, a spokesman at the Wilshire Baptist Church in Dallas, where Louise attends.
Since the Dallas Ebola scare, other possible cases have appeared elsewhere in America, but none have tested positive for the virus so far.
A man who had recently traveled to Nigeria was admitted to Howard University Hospital after showing possible symptoms. However, health officials said Ebola was ruled out of the man’s possible illnesses.
On Thursday, Ashoka Mukpo, an NBC freelance cameraman in Liberia, was diagnosed with Ebola. Mukpo is expected to be flown to the U.S. on Sunday on a private charter plane.
Ebola has killed over 3,000 people in West Africa. The nations of Liberia, Guinea and Sierra Leone continue to battle the fatal virus.