About the Ebola Outbreak - Minnesota Dept. of Health

About the 2014/2015 Ebola Outbreak in West Africa


On this page:
Affected Areas
Outbreak in West Africa

U.S. Cases
More Information

Affected Areas

Countries with former widespread Ebola transmission and current, established control measures:
  • Guinea
  • Sierra Leone
  • Liberia
CDC's Distribution map showing districts and cities reporting suspect cases of Ebola

Outbreak in West Africa

  • This was not the first outbreak of Ebola, but the 2014-2015 outbreak in West Africa is the largest in history.
  • The outbreak hit major cities with large populations in West Africa.
  • This region does not have all of the necessary resources or infrastructure to identify ill people, provide treatment, and prevent the spread of disease.
  • There was an enormous, international effort to contain the outbreak and there continues to be surveillance and support efforts. Agencies, such as CDC, WHO, and others, have sent people and resources to West Africa to help with identifying ill people, setting up laboratories and health care facilities, doing exit screening at airports, educating the public about Ebola, and advising health care personnel on infection control.


  • CDC has recommended that people not travel to countries with widespread transmission of Ebola unless it’s essential, such as providing humanitarian aid work.
  • CDC has procedures in place to try to prevent ill passengers from getting on a plane and protocols if an ill passenger were to travel to the United States.

  • If you are planning to travel outside the United States:
    • Discuss your travel plans with your health care provider before you go.
    • CDC Traveler’s Health
      Check this CDC website for updates on travel notices for specific diseases and countries. Attn. Non-MDH link.
  • After you return from a trip outside the United States:
    • Call your doctor or clinic right away if anyone gets a fever, headache, joint and muscle aches within three weeks of returning home.
    • Tell your doctor where you traveled, what you did, and if you had contact with anyone who had Ebola.


  • Active Traveler Monitoring
    Minnesota has stopped active traveler monitoring as of January 7, 2016. All information on this page is in reference to the 2014-2015 Ebola outbreak in West Africa and is not currently in place. Monitoring helps protect others from being exposed and ensure the individual gets early treatment. 

Prior U.S. Cases


  • The first Ebola case to be diagnosed in the U.S. was confirmed on Sept. 30, 2014, by the CDC and Texas Health Department. The patient died on Oct. 8, 2014.
  • Health officials monitored anyone the patient had been in contact with while showing symptoms of Ebola to make sure they did not develop symptoms.
  • A second case of Ebola was confirmed on Oct. 12 and a third case was confirmed on Oct. 15, both in health care workers in Texas. The health care workers cared for the original Ebola patient.
  • Both health care workers have been released from the hospital and no longer have Ebola.

New York City

  • A health care worker tested positive for Ebola on Oct. 23 after returning from West Africa where they had been caring for Ebola patients.
  • The health care worker was brought to the hospital after showing symptoms of Ebola on the morning of Oct. 23 and was treated in an isolation unit.
  • The health care worker was released from the hospital and no longer has Ebola.

Other cases treated in the U.S.

  • Seven individuals were brought to the U.S. for treatment after being diagnosed with Ebola while in West Africa.
  • One individual died while in the hospital. six individuals were successfully treated, released from the hospital, and no longer have Ebola. One individual is currently being treated at a hospital.

More Information


Updated Tuesday, 14-Nov-2017 15:41:01 CST