Albany doctor assigned to Georgia's Ebola Task Force

ALBANY, GA (WALB) - An Albany doctor appointed to Georgia's new Ebola Task Force is working to educate the state about the disease to calm your fears.

Former Phoebe Putney Chief Medical Officer Doug Patten now holds the same title with the Georgia Hospital Association.

"I think the concerns are legitimate, but I think the fear is not. This disease, for all the fear that is attached to it, is much less contagious than the common cold or the flu."

Patten said the flu is what we should worry about and get vaccinated for since it kills thousands of Americans every year.

He said the state has the power to quarantine anyone who poses a serious threat to public health.

New regulations announced by the governor Monday allow the state to force some travelers from west Africa into quarantine even if they aren't sick.

Governor Deal defends the new rules as less restrictive than some states.

"We believe that the response team has made good recommendations and we're going to implement those. We're going to be a little more careful in dealing with medical personnel who have actually been involved in treating these patients more so, then some of the state's that initially put some very hard restrictions on them."

Dr. Patten said some hospitals have already agreed to quarantine possible ebola patients for monitoring... But he would not identify them.

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