Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Ebola Kills Sierra Leone's Top Doctor, Lagos Quarantines Hospital Where Ebola Patient Died

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Sheik Umar Khan, a prominent doctor instrumental in the fight to contain the virus in Sierra Leone, has died today, roughly one week after the government disclosed that he had contracted the virus.

The news comes after a Liberian doctor died of the virus over the weekend and two Americans, Dr. Kent Brantly and Nancy Writebol, continued to struggle under intensive care in Monrovia, Liberia.

Meanwhile, the Lagos hospital where a patient died from Ebola has been evacuated and quarantined. The death was the first reported case to reach Nigeria, Africa's most populated country.

Reuters reports that the patient, Patrick Sawyer, a consultant for Liberia’s finance ministry, collapsed shortly after his flight landed at Lagos airport on July 20. He died while in treatment at First Consultants Hospital, Obalende.


Health officials said that doctors and nurses who came into contact with Sawyer have been isolated and closely monitored.


“The private hospital was demobilized (evacuated) and the primary source of infection eliminated,” said Lagos state health commissioner Jide Idris.

Nigerian officials said that they were monitoring 59 people who came into contact with Sawyer, including doctors, nurses and people at the airport. However, the airline on which he arrived in Lagos had not yet released the names of passengers.

The number of Ebola cases continues to climb in Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone, where the virus has infected 1,201 people and claimed 672 lives since it was first reported in West Africa in February, according to the World Health Organization. But the emergence of the disease in Lagos, a city of 21 million people, has officials fearing a greater challenge to containment.







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