In total, six Americans are known to have contracted Ebola since the outbreak began this spring. All of these infections occurred in West Africa, the epicenter of the outbreak. By contrast, many more Americans contracted the H1N1 virus during the 2009 outbreak, though it is not as virulent as the deadly Ebola virus.
These results come from an Oct. 4-5 Gallup poll, conducted shortly after the first diagnosed case of Ebola in the U.S. — a Liberian man staying in Texas — was discovered. This poll was conducted prior to news reports of a Spanish woman becoming the first known case of a person to contract Ebola outside of Africa in the current outbreak, which could agitate public concerns further.
By and large, most Americans do not think it is likely that they or someone in their family will get the Ebola virus — 34% deem it “not too likely,” and 49% say “not likely at all.” Four percent of Americans think it is very likely they will contract the Ebola virus, and another 10% consider it somewhat likely.