Passenger hospitalized in New Jersey is Ebola-free, released

Story highlights

  • A state official says patient was released and did not have Ebola
  • The passenger arrived in Newark Monday after recent travel to an "Ebola-affected country"
  • The patient was at Hackensack University Medical Center

(CNN)A plane passenger who had recently traveled to an "Ebola-affected country" does not have the virus and was released from the hospital, according to a statement from the New Jersey Department of Health.

The health care worker was hospitalized after a flight landed at Newark Liberty International Airport on Monday, a hospital spokeswoman said.
The passenger was kept overnight at Hackensack University Medical Center for further evaluation "in an abundance of caution," spokeswoman Nancy Radwin said.
    Luke Punzenberger, a spokesman for United, said an ill passenger was on a flight that arrived in Newark from Brussels Monday afternoon.
    "After arriving at Newark airport from Brussels, medical personnel met a United flight to assist an ill passenger on board," he said. "Passengers and crew stayed on the plane until the medical personnel cleared the aircraft."
    While the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention acknowledges it's possible a person infected with Ebola in West Africa could get on a plane and arrive in another country, the chances of the virus spreading during the journey are low.
    "It's very unlikely that they would be able to spread the disease to fellow passengers," Stephen Monroe, deputy director of the CDC's National Center for Emerging Zoonotic and Infectious Diseases, told CNN last year.
    "The Ebola virus spreads through direct contact with the blood, secretions or other body fluids of ill people, and indirect contact -- for example with needles and other things that may be contaminated with these fluids."