BRIARCLIFF, N.J. — It was a scene of intense concern, with a patient in intensive care and three of his relatives in critical condition after being isolated in the same hospital, authorities said Friday.
It was also a scene where two more people were being evaluated.
“I don’t know what it was about, but it was very scary,” said hospital spokeswoman Mary-Gretchen Ritter.
A third person, who was on the hospital’s intensive care unit, had been treated with a drug that is designed to fight the virus, Ritter said.
There were about 20 people in the intensive care ward, including several with Ebola, she said.
Two of them had not tested positive for the virus.
The others were “very close” to being in direct contact with the patient, Ritters said.
The third patient was also being monitored for symptoms, and was in good condition.
The hospital said it has sent two people to New Jersey.
There was a similar incident in November when another patient had tested negative, and a second person tested positive on Saturday, but there was no indication of transmission.
The hospital was notifying people who were in the hospital as of Friday morning about the suspected Ebola case, and warning that they were being monitored.
People who had tested positive are being monitored by health workers, said Dr. Paul B. Fauci, the chief medical officer for the state Department of Health.
He said he had not seen a single case of the virus in the state since he started treating Ebola patients in 2014.
Briarcliff is one of the busiest areas of New Jersey, home to about 3,500 people, about half of them of African descent.
Its population is predominantly white, and its primary healthcare system, in partnership with the state, is one in which doctors treat the sickest people first.
The county is about 35 miles (50 kilometers) northwest of New York City.
Its most recent Ebola case was a 27-year-old man who was admitted to the hospital in November after arriving in the area.
It was not clear whether he had contracted the virus during his stay.
The case was later determined to have come from Liberia.
The county’s first case was in 2014 in an African country, according to the state’s health department.
The health department said the patient was treated for symptoms that were mild.
He is being treated at the Brandywine County Medical Center, and is expected to survive.