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PostPosted: Sat Aug 23, 2014 9:13 pm 
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Media citing schedule evacuation of British medic from Freeport, Sierra Leone to London, England.

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PostPosted: Sat Aug 23, 2014 9:15 pm 
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UK ebola alert as infected medic to fly home: Desperate bid to save first Briton struck by virus
Charity worker is first Briton to contract the disease outside the laboratory
2,615 people have tested positive for the disease - and 1,427 have died
NHS chief said that the man will pose 'no risk to the public'

By SIMON WALTERS FOR THE MAIL ON SUNDAY and STEPHEN ADAMS FOR THE MAIL ON SUNDAY
PUBLISHED: 11:46 EST, 23 August 2014 | UPDATED: 16:36 EST, 23 August 2014


A British charity worker infected by the deadly ebola virus sweeping through West Africa is to be flown home in a desperate bid to save his life.
The man, the first Briton to contract the disease outside the laboratory, will be transported by the RAF from Sierra Leone, where 392 people are known to have died of the virus this year. The evacuation will take place today or tomorrow.
The decision to fly him back was taken yesterday after a top-level meeting during which Ministers concluded there was ‘no risk’ that the repatriation would trigger an outbreak in the UK.

A military aircraft was last night being equipped with a specially designed isolation tent, and infectious diseases experts were on standby to oversee the emergency evacuation.
Few details have emerged about the man’s identity, but it is understood he is a medic working for a British charity on the front line of the battle against ebola.
He will be flown into RAF Northolt near Heathrow in West London then driven across the capital by London Ambulance Service to North London and the Royal Free Hospital in Hampstead Heath – the only hospital in Britain equipped to treat an ebola patient and contain the virus.

Professor Sir Bruce Keogh said: ‘We have prepared rigorous plans for this type of situation.
‘This individual will pose no risk to the public, and only the tiniest risk to those who those who come into direct contact with him.
‘Ebola is not an airborne virus and can only be transmitted through bodily fluids such as blood, vomit, sweat and diarrhoea.’
The decision to fly the British man home was taken yesterday morning in a meeting involving Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt, Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond, Sir Bruce and Number 10.
A Ministry of Defence source said the man would be flown back in a C-130 Hercules, probably from RAF Brize Norton in Oxfordshire. The ebola outbreak, which has ripped through Sierra Leone, Guinea and Liberia in West Africa, is by far the biggest ever recorded.
So far there have been 2,615 confirmed cases and 1,427 deaths, according to the World Health Organisation (WHO), and casualties continue to mount by the day.
Dozens of British volunteers are thought to be working with ebola patients across the region. Although they wear full biological protection suits and are highly trained in infection control, they run the risk every day of catching the killer disease.


Yesterday Ivory Coast became the latest country to close its land borders due to fears over the spreading virus, following the lead of Senegal, Cameroon, Gabon and South Africa, which have imposed similar restrictions.
The disease is now spreading to Nigeria, which has major links to the UK. So far, five people in that country have died of ebola.
The Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) issued updated advice earlier this week which urged travellers to carefully assess their need to travel to Sierra Leone, Guinea and Liberia.
‘General medical facilities throughout Sierra Leone are currently under severe strain due to the ebola outbreak, and unable to provide the same standard of healthcare as in the UK. Dedicated healthcare facilities for ebola are overwhelmed,’ the FCO warned.
British Airways suspended flights to Liberia and Sierra Leone on August 5 until the end of the month over concerns about the outbreak.
The carrier normally operates a four-times-a-week service from Heathrow to Freetown in Sierra Leone, with a connection on to Monrovia in Liberia.
The only other Briton ever known to have contracted ebola is former laboratory technician Geoffrey Platt, who accidentally pricked his thumb while taking a sample from an infected guinea pig at the Microbiological Research Establishment at Porton Down in Wiltshire, in November 1976.
He suffered three days of extreme weakness, diarrhoea and vomiting, and a rash that covered his body – but he survived. Mr Platt then spent 40 days in quarantine.
Now 80, he said earlier this month: ‘The public need to be alert and everything needs to be done to stop ebola breaking out in Britain.’
It was confirmed yesterday that an Irish engineer who died at home after returning from working in Sierra Leone had not contracted ebola.


Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article ... z3BGfCUm7k
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 24, 2014 3:07 am 
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Location: Lisbon, Portugal
Quote:
Dozens of British volunteers are thought to be working with ebola patients across the region. Although they wear full biological protection suits and are highly trained in infection control, they run the risk every day of catching the killer disease.


Excellent example of how the media have come a long way in line with the apathy of the general population. Presented without any investigation or follow-up. I swear, this is all likely to end badly.

Here in Portugal, the "screening" done on the three reported suspect cases - arriving from affected areas for a period of a week - was performed by isolation, questionnaire, fever gauging, and physical inspection with unspecified blood work.

They were all discharged immediately after the blood work results. MoH insists on the "remote risk" and "awareness" meme.

http://www.publico.pt/sociedade/noticia ... la-1667081

http://www.noticiasaominuto.com/pais/26 ... m-portugal

http://diario.iol.pt/sociedade/ebola-pa ... -4071.html


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PostPosted: Sun Aug 24, 2014 8:40 am 
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VIDEO

24 August 2014 Last updated at 08:21 ET
Ebola outbreak: UK patient given medical help in Sierra Leone

A British national who has contracted Ebola in Sierra Leone is being offered assistance by medical teams there, the UK's Department of Health has said.

It comes amid press reports that the unnamed Briton - the first to contract the virus in this outbreak - was being assessed for transfer back to the UK.

It is understood they could be treated at an isolation unit at the Royal Free Hospital, in north London.

Health chiefs have said the risk of Ebola to the UK remains "very low".

The virus - one of the world's deadliest diseases - is spread between humans through direct contact with infected blood.

So far 1,427 people have died - more than in any other Ebola outbreak.

'Robust 'systems
The Department of Health said the Briton had been living in Sierra Leone, one the countries worst affected by the deadly virus.

BBC News correspondent Sarah Campbell said the person - who is receiving consular assistance - is believed to have been working as an aid worker in the country.

She said a "clinical decision" about whether the Briton should return to the UK could be made later and would be based on their fitness to travel along with the level of care provided in Sierra Leone.

If the person is returned to the UK, our correspondent said, they would be transferred via a "specialist transport isolation team" and could be flown to RAF Northolt, near Uxbridge, in west London.

It is likely they would then be transferred to the high-level isolation unit at the Royal Free Hospital -thought to be the only unit of its kind in Europe.

Medicins Sans Frontieres (MSF) health workers at an isolation camp in Liberia,

Several Sunday newspapers have also reported the patient could be transferred to London - but this is yet to be confirmed.

The BBC's Nigeria correspondent Will Ross said they would have a higher chance of survival if treated in the UK because the clinics in Sierra Leone are overwhelmed as the outbreak continues to spread.

Prof John Watson, deputy chief medical officer for England, said the overall risk to the public in the UK from Ebola continued to be "very low".

'Range of experts'
"Medical experts are currently assessing the situation in Sierra Leone to ensure that appropriate care is provided," he said.

"We have robust, well-developed and well-tested NHS systems for managing unusual infectious diseases when they arise, supported by a wide range of experts."

There is no cure for Ebola, although an experimental drug helped two Americans recover and three medical staff have also shown signs of improvement after taking it in Liberia.

Health workers say the body has a greater chance of fighting off the virus if the patient seeks help fast and the symptoms are treated.

Ebola
There is no vaccine or cure for the deadly virus
In West Africa many people have been reluctant to hand over their relatives, partly because more often than not they never see them again. More than half of those who have caught Ebola have died.

Foreign Office advice, updated earlier this week, urged people to carefully assess their need to travel to Sierra Leone, Guinea and Liberia.

British Airways suspended flights to Liberia and Sierra Leone on 5 August until the end of the month.

The World Health Organization has put the number of people infected with the virus at 2,615. A total of 1,427 have died since the disease was identified in Guinea in March and spread to Sierra Leone, Liberia and Nigeria.

Symptoms appear as a sudden onset of fever, intense weakness, muscle pain, headache and sore throat.

http://www.bbc.com/news/uk-28917244

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PostPosted: Sun Aug 24, 2014 9:44 am 
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24 August 2014 Last updated at 09:39 ET
British Ebola patient to fly to UK

A Briton who contracted the Ebola virus in Sierra Leone is being flown back to the UK on an RAF jet, the UK Department for Health has said.

The patient, who is a healthcare worker, is to be flown to RAF Northolt and will then transported to an isolation unit at the Royal Free Hospital in north London.

The Briton is "not currently seriously unwell", a spokesman said.

Health chiefs say the risk to the UK from the virus remains "very low".

The Department for Health said the patient was being "medically evacuated" in a specially equipped C17 RAF aircraft following "clinical advice".

It is the first confirmed case of a Briton contracting the virus, for which there is no cure, during the latest outbreak.

The virus - one of the world's deadliest diseases - is spread between humans through direct contact with infected bloodily fluids.

So far 1,427 people in West Africa have died - more than in any other Ebola outbreak.

A statement from Sierra Leone's health ministry said the Briton was a man who had been volunteering at a clinic in the Kenema district of Sierra Leone.

Sidie Yayah Tunis, director of communications at the health ministry, said the patient had been flown out of the country's main airport in the town of Lungi.

Dr Paul Cosford, director for health protection at Public Health England, said the Briton was being transferred with "all appropriate protocols promptly activated" by UK health agencies.

"Protective measures will be strictly maintained to minimise the risk of transmission to staff transporting the patient to the UK and healthcare workers treating the individual," he said.

http://www.bbc.com/news/uk-28919831

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PostPosted: Sun Aug 24, 2014 10:26 am 
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UK Evacuates British Ebola Patient
NATION'S FIRST VICTIM OF VIRUS WAS HEALTH WORKER IN SIERRA LEONE

By Polly Davis Doig, Newser Staff
Posted Aug 24, 2014 8:38 AM CDT

(NEWSER) – An RAF aircraft has left Sierra Leone today carrying a British citizen infected with Ebola, bound for treatment in an isolation unit in London's Royal Free Hospital, reports the BBC. London is confirming that a male patient was indeed infected, notes the AP; he was a volunteer at a clinic in the nation's Kenema district, which has been especially hard hit by the outbreak. There have been upward of 300 infections in Kenema, about a third of all cases in Sierra Leone, which has recorded almost 400 deaths from Ebola. The British patient, the nation's first, is "not currently seriously unwell," says a rep for the UK health department.

http://www.newser.com/story/192922/uk-e ... tient.html

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PostPosted: Sun Aug 24, 2014 10:36 am 
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OFFICIAL: BRITISH EBOLA PATIENT TO BE EVACUATED
By CLARENCE ROY-MACAULAY
— Aug. 24, 2014 9:52 AM EDT

FREETOWN, Sierra Leone (AP) — The first British citizen confirmed to be infected with the deadly Ebola disease is being evacuated from Sierra Leone on a jet sent by the Royal Air Force, a Sierra Leone official said Sunday.

The World Health Organization is also considering medical evacuation for an international health worker who has become infected in Sierra Leone, the U.N. health agency said in a statement.

Neither patient was identified by name, and the nationality of the infected WHO employee was not given.

The British patient was working at an Ebola treatment center in eastern Sierra Leone, the region most affected by the outbreak, said Sidie Yayah Tunis, director of communications for the Sierra Leone health ministry.

The two cases highlight the risks facing health workers on the front lines of the battle against Ebola, which has killed more than 1,400 people across West Africa, according to the latest WHO figures.

"This is the first time someone working under the aegis of WHO has fallen ill with the disease," the WHO said in its statement, adding that more than 225 health workers have been infected and nearly 130 have died from Ebola during the current outbreak.

The British patient was transported via ambulance to Sierra Leone's main airport in the town of Lungi, Tunis said.

Britain's Department of Health said the patient was being flown on a specially equipped RAF transport plane to Northolt air base in London.

He will be treated at London's Royal Free Hospital, which has an isolation unit for infectious disease.

The department said in a statement that the patient "is not currently seriously unwell."

The World Health Organization says Sierra Leone has recorded 910 Ebola cases and 392 deaths. The Sierra Leone government says there have been 881 cases and 333 deaths. In Kenema, where the Briton was working, the government has recorded 303 cases.

Two Americans and a Spanish medical worker have already been evacuated from Liberia and given ZMapp, an experimental and unproven treatment for Ebola. The Americans have recovered and been discharged while the Spaniard died.

The drug supply is now exhausted, the U.S. manufacturer has said.

__

Associated Press writer Jill Lawless contributed reporting from London.

http://bigstory.ap.org/article/nigeria- ... ola-threat

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PostPosted: Sun Aug 24, 2014 10:38 am 
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(Reuters) - A Royal Air Force plane carrying a British healthcare worker who contracted Ebola in Sierra Leone - the first Briton to catch the deadly virus - took off from the capital Freetown on Sunday bound for Britain.

The British man, whose name has not been released, was brought by ambulance to the Boeing C-17 cargo plane. The flight took off at around 1250 GMT (1350 BST).

The U.K. Department of Health said in a statement the man was not seriously ill and it had decided to repatriate the British national following clinical advice.

Upon arrival at the RAF Northolt airbase in Britain, he will be transported to an isolation unit at the Royal Free Hospital in London, the department said.

"Protective measures will be strictly maintained to minimise the risk of transmission to staff transporting the patient to the UK and healthcare workers treating the individual," said Paul Cosford, Director for Health Protection at Public Health England.

The outbreak of the hemorrhagic fever in West Africa - the worst since the disease was discovered in the jungles of Central Africa in 1976 - has so far killed at least 1,427 people, mostly in Sierra Leone, Liberia and neighbouring Guinea. Five deaths have also been reported in Nigeria.

Two American doctors who contracted Ebola in Liberia and were evacuated to the United States left hospital last week after receiving treatment with an experimental drug, ZMapp.

The U.S.-based manufacturer, Mapp Biopharmaceutical, has said limited supplies of the drug have already been exhausted.

(Reporting by Josephus Olu-Mammah in Freetown and Kylie MacLellan in London; Writing by Daniel Flynn)

http://uk.reuters.com/article/2014/08/2 ... H420140824

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PostPosted: Sun Aug 24, 2014 10:43 am 
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Press release
Update on Ebola in a British national working in Sierra Leone
From:Public Health England, Department of Health and NHS England History:Published 24 August 2014 Part of:Public health
A British national healthcare worker residing in Sierra Leone, who has been diagnosed with Ebola virus disease, is being repatriated.
Ebola virus
The Department of Health, Public Health England (PHE) and NHS England can confirm that, following clinical advice, a decision has been made to repatriate a British national healthcare worker residing in Sierra Leone, who has been diagnosed with Ebola virus disease.

The patient is not currently seriously unwell and is being medically evacuated in a specially equipped C17 Royal Air Force (RAF) plane to RAF Northolt in the UK. Upon arrival in the UK, the patient will be transported to an isolation unit at the Royal Free London NHS Foundation Trust.

The UK has well established and practised infection control procedures for dealing with cases of imported infectious disease and these will be strictly followed to minimise the risk of transmission while the patient is in transit and receiving treatment at the Royal Free Hospital.

Ebola is transmitted by direct contact with the blood or bodily fluids of an infected person. No cases of imported Ebola have been reported in the UK.

Professor John Watson, Deputy Chief Medical Officer, said:

It is important to be reassured that although a case of Ebola in a British national healthcare worker residing in Sierra Leone has been identified and is being brought back to the UK the overall risk to the public in the UK remains very low.

We have robust, well-developed and well-tested NHS systems for managing unusual infectious diseases when they arise, supported by a wide range of experts.

UK hospitals have a proven record of dealing with imported infectious diseases and this patient will be isolated and will receive the best care possible.

Dr Paul Cosford, Director for Health Protection at Public Health England, said:

The patient is being transferred to the Royal Free Hospital for appropriate treatment in an isolation unit, with all appropriate protocols promptly activated by the Department of Health, PHE and NHS England. Protective measures will be strictly maintained to minimise the risk of transmission to staff transporting the patient to the UK and healthcare workers treating the individual.

For Ebola to be transmitted from one person to another contact with blood or other body fluids is needed and as such, the risk to the general population remains very low.

Dr Bob Winter, National Clinical Director for Emergency Preparedness and Critical Care for NHS England, said:

NHS England, together with PHE, the Department of Health and other key stakeholders has been working hard over the past few weeks to ensure any patient who contracts Ebola and needs to be repatriated to the UK receives the best possible care and treatment. The NHS has a special unit at the Royal Free in London which is well prepared to receive this patient.

ENDS

Notes to editors
No further details about the patient will be provided due to patient confidentiality.
The Royal Free Hospital will issue a statement to confirm the arrival of the patient but it will not issue daily condition checks. An update will only be provided if there is a significant change to the patient’s condition. Pooled film footage of the high level isolation unit is available from BBC Health and ITV Health. More information about the Royal Free Hospital’s isolation unit.
Ebola is a form of viral haemorrhagic fever and currently more than 2,400 cases have been reported in Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone, of which there have been more than 1,300 deaths. This is the first documented Ebola outbreak in West Africa, and it is the largest ever known outbreak of this disease.
PHE continues to work with the World Health Organisation and a wide range of technical partners including UNICEF, Médecins Sans Frontières, to provide technical support to the affected countries. By the end of August, PHE will have deployed 10 staff to the affected areas, providing virological and epidemiological support.
All front line medical practitioners in the UK have been advised to be alert to signs and symptoms of Ebola in those returning from affected areas. Advice has also been given to Border staff on what to do if a person who may have Ebola is identified.
PHE has published a risk assessment of the current Ebola outbreak for the UK resident population and UK citizens in West Africa.
PHE has also published advice for humanitarian workers working in the affected areas and also a general information factsheet.
The Department for International Development has committed more than £5 million in response to the Ebola crisis in Sierra Leone and Liberia.
More information on Ebola is available from NHS Choices.
Media enquiries: Department of Health news desk 07050 073581

https://www.gov.uk/government/news/upda ... erra-leone

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PostPosted: Sun Aug 24, 2014 10:47 am 
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A British healthcare worker who has tested positive for ebola has left Sierra Leone on a Royal Air Force jet bound for the UK.

The unnamed man is being flown to RAF Northolt near Heathrow from where he will be taken to an isolation unit at the Royal Free Hospital in north London. The flight on a specially equipped C17 plane will take about eight hours.

He is understood to have been a volunteer at a clinic in the country's Kenema district.

Sky's Enda Brady said: "Inside that aircraft will be an air transport isolator, a piece of equipment that has been used several times in the past few years. The patient will effectively be placed inside a bubble."

The Royal Free has the UK's only high-level isolation unit comprising of a specially designed tent with controlled ventilation, which has been on standby since the latest outbreak.

The Department of Health said: "The UK has well-established and practised infection control procedures for dealing with cases of imported infectious disease.

Sierra Leone
The British man became ill while living in Sierra Leone
"These will be strictly followed to minimise the risk of transmission while the patient is in transit and receiving treatment at the Royal Free Hospital."

It is the first confirmed case of a British person catching the tropical infection, which kills up to 90% of those who contract it.

Professor Tom Solomon, director of the Institute of Infection and Global Health at the University of Liverpool, said the "strains" on the healthcare system in Sierra Leone may be the reason for moving the patient.

"We do have facilities in the UK for caring for people with haemorrhagic fevers," he said. "There is a high-level isolation unit at the Royal Free Hospital in London which is very well set up for things like this.

"The medical services in Sierra Leone are very strained at the minute so it may well be the case that this person is brought to the UK for treatment."

The Foreign Office has advised Britons to "carefully assess" whether they need to travel to Sierra Leone, Liberia or Guinea, where the current outbreak began in March.

Since then the World Health Organisation says there have been 2,615 confirmed cases and 1,427 deaths.

Ebola Virus Preparations At The Royal Free Hospital
The Royal Free has the UK's only high-level isolation unit
Medical charity Medicine Sans Frontieres has warned that infections are spreading faster than authorities can handle and it could take six months to bring the outbreak under control.

Professor John Watson, Britain's deputy chief medical officer for England, insisted the risk to the British public remained "very low".

"The final assessment before the decision was made to go ahead with the repatriation was made at the airfield in Sierra Leone," he said.

"The precautions are what I would describe as belt and braces. We want to be absolutely certain there is no risk of infection by this patient to others in this country.

"The way in which this infection is spread is through direct contact with bodily fluids and so most people are not at risk."

Ebola is contracted through contact with an infected person's bodily fluids and there is currently no cure or vaccine.

Symptoms of the virus appear as a sudden onset of fever, headache, sore throat, intense weakness and muscle pain.

http://news.sky.com/story/1323802/briti ... back-to-uk

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