Ebola screening plans beefed up by government

Kate McCann
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PLANS to step-up screening at the UK border for people coming from countries afflicted with Ebola were announced yesterday by the health secretary.

In a statement in the House of Commons Jeremy Hunt sought to reassure people that the threat posed to the UK by the deadly virus remains low, but warned that a handful of cases in the country are now likely.

Screening will begin at Heathrow Terminal 1 this morning, and will include temperature checks, a questionnaire and a record of contact details of people flying in from affected countries. Hunt told MPs the terminal welcomes 85 per cent of people entering Heathrow from the countries most at risk, making it the most sensible place to start screening. Gatwick, Eurostar terminals and other Heathrow zones will introduce checks later this week.

The health secretary also announced that all UK entry routes will call on passengers who think they might be at risk of carrying Ebola to report themselves to officials from this Friday. NHS call handlers on the 111 hotline have been given additional training, he added.

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