Health and Safety Resources for Ebola

New cases and deaths attributable to Ebola Virus Disease (EVD) continue to be reported by the Ministries of Health in areas in Africa; the majority of the cases are in Liberia, Guinea and Sierra Leone. The U.N. is leading an appeal for assistance and has received cooperation from many agencies including The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and countries including China and the U.S. who are supporting the development of treatment centers in the most at-risk areas.

GeoBlue has dedicated multilingual resources available 24/7 for members in need of medical care and assistance while visiting any of the cities in Africa where there has been an outbreak of EVD.

Find out more information about the situation:

Travel and security information may be obtained from the Department of State by calling

  • 1.888.407.4747 (in the U.S)
  • or
  • +1.202.501.4444 (worldwide)

Call: +1.610.254.8771

Please visit the GeoBlue member hub or download the GeoBlue member app to access your global benefits information and self-service member tools.

Mobile Devices Image
Apple App Store Badge Google PlayStore Badge Amazon App Store Badge

Our Facilities

Many of the contracted or notable facilities that we profile online and in our apps have curtailed their hours for patient care or have temporarily closed their doors. For up-to-date information on availability of services in the affected countries, members should call +1.610.254.8771.

10 Things You Need To Know About Ebola Right Now

Dr. Vanya Gant has provided 10 important facts about the current Ebola outbreak in Africa and how it could impact you.

Photo credit: Frederick A. Murphy, Centers for Disease Control (

Ebola Virus Disease ("Ebola")

Ebola (previously known as Ebola hemorrhagic fever) is a rare but severe disease, which is caused by Ebola virus. It was first recognized in 1976 and has caused sporadic outbreaks ever since in several African countries.

Largest Ever Outbreak

More than 21,000 cases have been reported since March 2014, of which there have been more than 8,400 deaths. This is the first documented Ebola outbreak in Africa and the largest ever known outbreak of this disease.

There are currently no signs that the outbreak is coming under control, with new cases reported daily from both known and new outbreak areas. Cases of virus transmission continue to emerge in both the community and health-care settings. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention predicts that the number of cases in Sierra Leone and Liberia could explode to as many as 1.4 million by the end of January.

Why Ebola is Spreading in Africa

The continued spread of the disease probably relates at least in part to issues of strong, local cultural beliefs (such as washing the bodies of the dead, and the stigma surrounding the disease); overpopulation and crowding; migration of people across borders; a perception by local people that the healthcare professionals attempting to help are making things worse; and inadequate human resources on a background of deep poverty.

How is it Transmitted?

The virus is transmitted to people initially from wild animals, and then from person to person via contact with blood and body fluids. In addition, contaminated objects (clothes, needles) can also transmit infection if handled. Airborne transmission is thought to be limited to those viruses carried in large droplets of human secretions.

The Course of the Disease

Infection with Ebola virus leads to sudden onset of fever, chills, muscle aches, headache, diarrhea, nausea and vomiting, with sore throat and in some cases a rash. This will develop as early as 2 days after infection and as late as 21 days. This is then followed by impaired kidney and liver function and stomach pain, and in some cases uncontrolled bleeding, both external (such as through puncture sites) and internal (causing vital organ damage). Ebola is fatal in 50 to 90% of cases who develop these signs and symptoms.

Ebola Looks Like Many Other Illnesses

Many other far more common illnesses in these countries start off like Ebola, such as flu, typhoid, and malaria. This makes prompt and early assessment even more important - especially since survival seems better in those cases identified early.

When Are You at Risk?

It is very important to remember that you will not be at risk of Ebola infection unless you have been in close contact with people with the above symptoms. You cannot catch Ebola from people who are well, with the exception of close contact of a sexual nature, as patients who have recovered may still be infectious for a considerable period of time.

How to Seek Help if You Think You're Infected

Nevertheless, if you feel unwell with symptoms such as fever, chills, muscle aches, headache, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, sore throat or rash within 21 days of coming back from a known outbreak area you should stay at home and immediately telephone relevant health services. These services will provide advice and arrange for you to be seen in a hospital if necessary, so that the cause of your illness can be determined as quickly as possible. Unless you have had direct contact with sick people in these countries, another diagnosis for which treatment is available (such as malaria) may be made, and you will be treated.

Humanitarian Workers - Infection Control

For those performing humanitarian work in these countries, the risk of Ebola infection will relate entirely to the quality and consistency of your personal Infection Control procedures and discipline. Perfect and vital barrier technique includes wearing protective gowns, gloves, masks and eye protection or face shields, and the careful removal of these after use. WHO recommendations address direct patient care, laboratory activities, post mortem examinations, movement and burial of human remains, cleaning and waste disposal.

In conclusion

  1. Don't go to these countries unless you really have to
  2. If you are there, be very careful to avoid crowded public places and close contact with others
  3. If you are there for humanitarian purposes, go prepared, trained, vigilant, and equipped with personal protective equipment