CDC director 'remains confident' US can contain Ebola

Centres for Disease Control and Prevention director Thomas Frieden speaks at the CDC headquarters in Atlanta, Georgia on Sept 30, 2014. He said on Thursday he "remains confident" that the US can contain the spread of the Ebola virus, after up to 100
Centres for Disease Control and Prevention director Thomas Frieden speaks at the CDC headquarters in Atlanta, Georgia on Sept 30, 2014. He said on Thursday he "remains confident" that the US can contain the spread of the Ebola virus, after up to 100 people were exposed to an Ebola patient. -- PHOTO: REUTERS

ATLANTA, Georgia (REUTERS) - The director of US Centres for Disease Control and Prevention said on Thursday he "remains confident" that the United States can contain the spread of the Ebola virus in the United States.

The CDC and Texas health authorities said in a news conference they are assessing as many as 100 contacts of a patient who flew to Texas from Liberia via Brussels and Washington two weeks ago, and only "a handful" have been identified as possibly being exposed to Ebola.

Dr Thomas Frieden, the CDC's director, also said the agency has been looking closely at the issue of the safe removal of medical waste generated by patients with Ebola.

Currently, hospitals do not have the capability of sterilising it, and US transportation regulations prohibit waste haulers from removing it. Frieden said the agency expects to have that issue resolved today.