UK & World News

  • 2 August 2014, 23:21

Ebola: Infected American Doctor Arrives In US

One of two Americans infected with ebola in West Africa has arrived in the US.

A plane carrying Dr Kent Brantlytook off from Liberia and landed in Marietta, Georgia, about midday on Saturday.

The 33-year-old member of the charity Samaritan's Purse was transported via ambulance to Emory University Hospital where he will continue to receive care in a special isolation unit.

Dr Brantly is the first ever ebola patient to be transported to American soil for treatment.

A second US patient, missionary Nancy Writebol, is due to arrive on a later flight as the plane is only equipped to carry one patient at a time.

The aircraft was outfitted with a special, portable tent designed to isolate highly infectious diseases.

On Thursday both patients were said to be in a "stable but grave condition"after contracting thehaemorrhagicfever in the Liberian capital Monrovia.

The World Health Organisation's director-general warned on Friday that the ebola outbreak, which has killed at least 729 people, is out of control but can be stopped.

Margaret Chan told the presidents of Guinea, Liberia and Sierra, the three worst affected nations: "This outbreak is moving faster than our efforts to control it.

"If the situation continues to deteriorate, the consequences can be catastrophic in terms of lost lives but also severe socioeconomic disruption and a high risk of spread to other countries.

"This meeting must mark a turning point in the outbreak response."

Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone announced on Friday a quarantine zone to seal off the epicentre of the outbreak where the three countries meet.

One US citizen has already died of the virus. Liberian health ministry official Patrick Sawyer, a naturalised American, began vomiting on a flight from Liberia to Nigeria last month.

Mr Sawyer, who had planned to visit family in Minnesota in August, was taken to a hospital in Lagos where he died.

His case sparked particular alarm because he was able to board an international flight while infected with the incurable disease.

Two other Americans - Peace Corps volunteers - have been isolated after becoming exposed to ebola in West Africa and are under observation, though neither has shown any symptoms.

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