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State, Hospitals Prepare for Ebola

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Gov. Rick Scott says Florida officials continue to work with health care providers and the Center for Disease Control in an effort to prepare Florida for any possible Ebola cases.

And hospitals across Florida on alert already are responding to suspicious cases.

In Miami Beach, a teen with flu-like symptoms who was visiting from West Africa was screened for Ebola, the Miami Herald reports. The screening came back negative, but the result has been sent to the CDC, the Herald reports. The patient was transferred to Jackson Memorial Hospital, which quarantined a pediatric unit, called in hazardous materials teams and blocked off streets near the hospital, the Herald reports.

And in Sarasota, a patient who had traveled to West Africa and had Ebola-like symptoms has been moved out of isolation, the Bradenton Herald reports. Emergency medicine doctors and infectious-disease specialists at Sarasota Memorial Hospital said it’s “highly unlikely” the patient has Ebola, the newspaper reports.

Scott was briefed Saturday on the state's preparedness along with Florida Surgeon General John Armstrong, Emergency Management Director Bryan Koon and Health Care Administration Secretary Elizabeth Dudek. To date there have been no confirmed cases of Ebola in Florida.

The Florida Department of Health is currently distributing recommendations to Florida hospitals for detecting suspected Ebola virus.

In addition, health officials in each of the department's 67 county health offices have been meeting with hospital staff to review protocols and guidelines for responding to a possible Ebola diagnosis.