The Portsmouth Health Department is dedicated to promoting, protecting, and preserving a healthy and safe community.
For reporting a public health emergency, such as a reportable disease or environmental public health hazard, after normal business hours, on holidays or weekends, please contact 866-531-3068
Volunteer for the Portsmouth Health District MRC
PHDMRC volunteers support local public health initiatives and emergency response. There are roles for both medical and non-medical volunteers. Participate in mass prophylaxis and vaccinations exercises and community disaster drills. Train with local emergency response partners. To volunteer: visit www.vamrc.org
Are you ready for winter weather? Take this time to prepare before a winter emergency hits to reduce the risk of weather-related health problems and injuries. Learn more about preparing yourself and loved ones for winter weather here.
Last week, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) announced the first confirmed case of Ebola diagnosed in the United States in a person who traveled to West Africa. Since then, there has been a significant amount of media interest and public inquiry about the possibility of an Ebola epidemic in the U.S and even in Hampton Roads.
There’s all the difference in the world between the Hampton Roads and parts of West Africa where Ebola is spreading. The U.S. and Portsmouth are prepared, and have strong health care systems and public health professionals who will make sure this case does not threaten our community. As CDC Director has said, "I have no doubt that we will control this case of Ebola, so that it does not spread widely in this country."
Although Ebola is a highly destructive disease, it is not a highly contagious disease.
Here are the facts you should know about Ebola:
What is Ebola? Ebola virus is the cause of a viral hemorrhagic fever disease. Symptoms include: fever, headache, joint and muscle aches, weakness, diarrhea, vomiting, stomach pain, lack of appetite, and abnormal bleeding. Symptoms may appear anywhere from 2 to 21 days after exposure to Ebola virus though 8-10 days is most common.
How is Ebola transmitted? Ebola is transmitted through direct contact with the blood or bodily fluids of an infected symptomatic person or though exposure to objects (such as needles) that have been contaminated with infected secretions.
Can Ebola be transmitted through the air? No. Ebola is not a respiratory disease like the flu, so it is not transmitted through the air.
Can I get Ebola from contaminated food or water? No. Ebola is not transmitted through food in the United States. It is not transmitted through water.
Can I get Ebola from a person who is infected but doesn’t have any symptoms? No. Individuals who are not symptomatic are not contagious. In order for the virus to be transmitted, an individual would have to have direct contact with an individual who is experiencing symptoms or has died of the disease.
For more information about Ebola visit:
Ebola Frequently Asked Questions
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Ebola Virus Disease
Ebola Information for Healthcare Providers and Facilities
For questions about Ebola you can call our 24/7 hotline at (877)275-8343