Official: Preliminary test of CMC patient shows malaria

by: Trish Williford Updated:


CHARLOTTE, N.C. - Mecklenburg County Health Department officials said preliminary tests on a patient admitted to Carolinas Medical Center - Main's Tuesday night who traveled from Africa, indicated malaria.

The Health Department is waiting for final test results from CMC to determine if that is the case.

Those results are expected within seven days.

Malaria is a non-transmittable disease.

For more information on malaria, visit the CDC's website, here.

A corridor of CMC's Emergency Room was roped off on the first floor, near the entrance earlier Wednesday.

A security guard was posted outside, to prevent anyone from crossing the line.

During a 4 p.m. press conference Katie Passaretti, who is an infectious disease specialist with CMC, said precautions were put into place when patient was brought in Tuesday night.  The patient was traveling from Africa and arrived at the hospital around 11:30 p.m.

Around 3 a.m. the security precautions were put into place at the hospital, Passaretti said.

Passaretti said they determined the patient did not have Ebola.  The patient has been discharged home.

'There was great communication between hospital and CDC. The hospital staff did an excellent job," Passaretti said

Passaretti said there are no cases of Ebola in the United States

Earlier in the day, a CMC spokesperson released the following statement around noon Wednesday:

"Late last evening, a patient arrived at Carolinas Medical Center Emergency Department after visiting a country known for high risk of infectious diseases. We took all appropriate infection control measures to protect patients, staff, and visitors. After consulting with the Centers for Disease Control and NC Department of Health and Human Services, it appears the risk for communicable disease is low. No further testing is needed and the patient will be sent home. The Emergency Department at Carolinas Medical Center remains open and operating normally."

CMC officials said earlier Wednesday that a patient was being tested, but a spokesman would not specify what for. Officials with CMC said Wednesday afternoon the patient had recently visited Africa.

The Department of Health and Human Services said it was first informed of the situation Wednesday morning and was in close contact with Carolinas Healthcare System.

The clinical care team and public health officials have reviewed the case in great detail and have determined that the patient’s illness and epidemiologic information are not consistent with Ebola infection, DHHS said. Therefore, Ebola testing will not be performed.

The patient is receiving treatment for another unrelated condition and does not represent a public health threat, DHHS said.

This scare comes after news of a Charlotte missionary, Nancy Writebol, who tested positive for Ebola this weekend. Nancy and her husband, David, have been doing missionary work in Liberia for the past year.

Check back to for updates to this story.