A college campus in San Diego was cordoned off by the county Department of Health on Thursday after a female student who may have had contact with an Ebola patient vomited in the middle of class.
A teacher at Southwestern College told the school paper that the student may have been on the same plane as Amber Joy Vinson, the second healthcare worker infected with Ebola in the United States after treating Thomas Duncan at Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital.
“A precaution has been taken regarding a student whose family member reported flu-like symptoms and was hospitalized,” the school wrote in a post to its Facebook page. “The Campus Police have cordoned off the 470 area. The County Department of Health has been called and is in transit to assess the situation.”
According to the school paper, other students in the class have been put under quarantine following the illness.
“I started asking them, the police officers, ‘Is there a real threat?'” fellow student Vincent Avila-Walker told the paper. “Because our classroom is right there. If there is a real threat, I need to know so I can protect myself.”
A school official has since clarified to CBS San Francisco that “there is no chance of Ebola on campus,” and blamed the incident on a “communication problem” at Southwestern College.
The quarantined students were reportedly being held in a courtyard on campus. All classes at Southwestern College have been canceled for the rest of the day.
***Update: A statement on the Southwestern College website contradicts this report, claiming the student herself was not ill and that, “An earlier communication saying that the County Department of Health was on their way was incorrect.”