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PostPosted: Wed Sep 03, 2014 3:07 pm 

Joined: Wed Aug 19, 2009 10:42 am
Posts: 56044
Location: Pittsburgh, PA USA
niman wrote:
morning wrote:
niman wrote:
Not at all. There are many non-pregnant people in Monrovia who are infected with Ebola, including HCWs.

But of whom the doctor would stay clear had they been symptomatic.

Most HCWs are infected by other HCWs, including the two earlier SIM American cases.

Monrovia daily reports have new Ebola HCWs almost every day


PostPosted: Wed Sep 03, 2014 3:27 pm 
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Joined: Mon Aug 04, 2014 5:45 pm
Posts: 296
Location: Lisbon, Portugal
Dr Niman, I feel compelled to contest your proposition that scale, as a single factor, can account on itself for the ongoing spread.

By statistical estimates most outbreaks would have burned out by now. We either assume one or many unknown vectors, a rise in subclinical viremia, or we assume all infected HCW's post-July are reckless or unequipped.

It's funny (sort of) that both you and I have views that clash with, among others, Dr MacKay's yet we also clash between our two viewpoints.

PostPosted: Wed Sep 03, 2014 4:09 pm 

Joined: Wed Aug 19, 2009 10:42 am
Posts: 56044
Location: Pittsburgh, PA USA
morning wrote:
Dr Niman, I feel compelled to contest your proposition that scale, as a single factor, can account on itself for the ongoing spread.

By statistical estimates most outbreaks would have burned out by now. We either assume one or many unknown vectors, a rise in subclinical viremia, or we assume all infected HCW's post-July are reckless or unequipped.

It's funny (sort of) that both you and I have views that clash with, among others, Dr MacKay's yet we also clash between our two viewpoints.

There have been a record number of media reports as well as WHO updates, which give quite a bit of detail on the Ebola spread. There is considerable concern about spread in Port Harcourt, but the index is linked indirectly to Patrick Sawyer (Dr treated Sawyer contact) and had multiple high risk actions including operating on patients while symptomatic, hosting a baby shower, and prayer service which involved physical contact. Similar tracing was done with his sister and hospital outbreaks in Monrovia.
Ebola in Monrovia is creating much to the Ebola spike. It is now #1 location for deaths of cases as well as HCWs.


PostPosted: Wed Sep 03, 2014 4:17 pm 

Joined: Wed Aug 19, 2009 10:42 am
Posts: 56044
Location: Pittsburgh, PA USA
U.S. Doctor Didn't Treat Ebola Patients Yet Still Caught The Virus
September 03, 2014 3:50 PM ET
Dr. Rick Sacra, who had worked in Liberia in previous years, went back in August to tend to pregnant women and to children. The 51-year-old Massachusetts family physician is the third American to contract the Ebola virus.

Courtesy of SIM
Christian aid group SIM has identified the third American to catch the disease as Dr. Rick Sacra.

The 51-year-old family physician from Massachusetts has been working on and off in Liberia with his wife, Debbie, since 1995. He joined SIM in the late '80s and between 2008 and 2010 was the acting medical director at the group's ELWA Hospital in Monrovia. He had previously served as the group's Liberia director for several years.

The third American health worker to contract the Ebola virus in Liberia was an obstetrician at the ELWA hospital, which is run by the missionary group SIM.

Sacra volunteered to help with the current Ebola outbreak back in August, shortly after Nancy Writebol and Dr. Kent Brantly — the first two Americans to catch Ebola — fell sick. Writebol, a health care worker, was also with SIM and Brantly was with Samaritan's Purse.

"Rick called and said 'I'm ready to go,' " SIM's president Bruce Johnson told reporters at a press conference today. "They [Sacra and another doctor who was not identified] knew the risks going in."

Sacra was at the obstetrics ward seeing pregnant mothers — some of whom were turned away from other crowded facilities in Liberia. He did not treat Ebola patients.

Exactly how Sacra caught the virus remains unknown. The obstetrics ward is located at the main hospital, which is separate from the Ebola isolation unit. Johnson said Sacra was following all the precautions advised by CDC and Doctors Without Borders, including wearing protective gear.

Johnson added that all patients coming in to the hospital are screened for fever, and when necessary, monitored for other Ebola symptoms. "There's a strong possibility Ebola symptoms were masked," he said.

The first signs of Ebola appeared Friday, when Sacra noticed his temperature rising. He isolated himself and continued monitoring his temperature throughout the weekend.

On Monday, an Ebola test run by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention came back positive. Sacra has since been placed in an isolation ward at the ELWA hospital for treatment.
Ebola virus survivor Dr. Kent Brantly (center) and his wife, Amber (left), walk at a news conference at Emory University Hospital in Atlanta Thursday. Brantly and aid worker Nancy Writebol were discharged from the hospital less than a month after they contracted Ebola while treating patients in Liberia.

Johnson refrained from fleshing out the details of Sacra's treatment, but said that there hasn't been any contact with Emory Hospital in Atlanta, where the first two American Ebola patients were hospitalized last month. There are no more doses of the experimental drug ZMapp used to treat the two missionaries.

SIM is determined to continue providing care to patients with Ebola, and those with other ailments. The aid group has approximately 250 health workers in Liberia and plans to recruit more volunteers.

"This is not the time to sit back and watch the wildfire happen," Johnson said. "We need doctors, nurses and medical professionals to help."

http://www.npr.org/blogs/goatsandsoda/2 ... um=twitter


PostPosted: Wed Sep 03, 2014 5:53 pm 

Joined: Wed Aug 19, 2009 10:42 am
Posts: 56044
Location: Pittsburgh, PA USA
Mass. Doctor Contracts Ebola in Liberia

By Chelsea Rice
Boston.com Staff
September 3, 2014 5:37 PM

The third American to be diagnosed with the deadly Ebola virus is Dr. Rick Sacra from Holden, Mass. In a press conference held today for Nancy Writebol, one of three patients that contracted the Ebola virus in Liberia, officials with the missionary organization SIM USA made the announcement about Dr. Sacra, who is being treated at EVM Hospital outside of Monrovia.
Dr. Richard Sacra is seen in this undated photo provided by his medical practice, Family Health Center of Worcester, Inc., in Worcester. Mass. Sacra it the third American doctor reported to have contracted the Ebola virus while treating the African breakout. (AP Photo/Family Health Center of Worcester, Inc.) AP

Dr. Sacra and his wife, Debbie, live in Holden with their three children, according to multiple sources. Dr. Sacra is a family physician in Worcester and an assistant professor of family medicine and community health at University of Massachusetts Medical School, where he graduated in 1989.

At the news of the outbreak, Dr. Sacra volunteered about a month ago to go with SIM to Liberia. He was working in the obstetrics unit when, SIM officials believe, he contracted the virus.

“Rick is the consummate family physician, incredibly bright, skilled with his hands, and also just a wonderful human being,” said Dr. Warren Ferguson, a colleague and friend of Dr. Sacra’s at UMass Medical School, in a media briefing on Tuesday afternoon. Dr. Warren hired Dr. Sacra right out of the UMass residency program in 1992. “He’s passionate not only about his missionary work, but also extremely devoted to combining his faith with medicine.”

Dr. Sacra also teaches in the school’s residency program at the Family Health Center of Worcester. According to UMass Medical School, Dr. Sacra has spent much of his career working overseas, and has made frequent working trips over the past two decades to Liberia. One of his students, Dr. Virginia Van Duyne, suppressed tears as she spoke at a media briefing about her mentor and family friend. She used to babysit for the Sacra family as a teenager.

“Through course of my career pursuing medicine he’s been a mentor to me and an influence on the kind of doctor I am today,” said Dr. Van Duyne. “I got to spend a few months with him while I was in medical school, in Liberia where he is right now. He has incredible skills as a physician and is really excellent at the bedside with patients.”

SIM President Bruce Johnson said in the press conference Tuesday morning that Dr. Sacra’s symptoms began on Friday evening when he developed a fever. On Monday, September 1, staff ran the Ebola test. When that test came back positive later that day, Dr. Sacra moved himself to the Ebola unit.

“He’s courageous. Doctors have a privilege of being able to care for people in their greatest time of need,” said Dr. Van Duyne. “With that privilege comes great responsibility, and I think he really takes that seriously. I’m scared, I’m sad, but I also know that I’m trusting that he’s in good care. The people in Liberia he’s been mentoring are now caring for him, so that says some amazing things.”

As of Tuesday afternoon, there were no updates on whether Dr. Sacra will be transferred to be treated in Massachusetts.

“As across the country, Boston area hospitals are well prepared to treat suspect or confirmed cases of Ebola,” said McKenzie Ridings, speaking on behalf of the Boston Public Health Commission on whether Dr. Sacra will be transferred for care in Boston. “Our thoughts and prayers are with Dr. Rick Sacra and his family, and we wish him a full recovery. At this time we are not aware of plans to transfer patients to Boston.”

http://www.boston.com/health/2014/09/03 ... story.html


PostPosted: Wed Sep 03, 2014 6:06 pm 

Joined: Wed Aug 19, 2009 10:42 am
Posts: 56044
Location: Pittsburgh, PA USA
Massachusetts Doctor Infected With Ebola in West Africa
Sep 3, 2014, 5:05 PM ET

GILLIAN MOHNEY More From Gillian »
PHOTO: Dr. Richard Sacra is seen in this undated photo provided by the University of Massachusetts Medical school in a statement about reports that Dr. Sacra has contracted the Ebola virus.

Dr. Richard Sacra is seen in this undated photo provided by the University of Massachusetts Medical school in a statement about reports that Dr. Sacra has contracted the Ebola virus. University of Massachusetts Medical School

A Massachusetts doctor has been identified as the third U.S. health worker to be infected with the Ebola virus in West Africa.

Rick Sacra, 51, was treating pregnant women in the ELWA Hospital in Monrovia, Liberia, when he was infected, according to missionary group SIM.

Sacra, an assistant professor at University of Massachusetts Medical School, was not treating Ebola patients in the hospital’s separate Ebola isolation facility, the group said, adding that it was unclear how he contracted the virus. All infected U.S. health workers were working at the ELWA hospital when they contracted the virus.

Sacra's family released a statement today saying the doctor had isolated himself after running a fever Friday.

“Although this was the worst possible news, [Sacra's wife, Debbie Sacra] is confident that Dr. Jerry Brown, Rick’s Liberian colleague and friend, is doing everything he can to care for Rick through these days when the sickness is most intense," the family said in a statement.

Sacra has been transferred to the ELWA Ebola ward where is "doing well and is in good spirits," according to SIM, an international, interdenominational Christian organization based in Charlotte, North Carolina.

“My heart was deeply saddened, but my faith was not shaken, when I learned another of our missionary doctors contracted Ebola,” SIM president Bruce Johnson said in a statement.

Sacra specializes in family medicine and practices in Worcester, Massachusetts. He is a graduate of the University of Massachusetts Medical School and spent nearly two decades working in Liberia, according to the University of Massachusetts Medical School.

Sacra’s colleagues at the medical school called him a “gifted physician” who had taken on extra work to treat pregnant women in the rural country.

“What is particular special about Rick is not only a gifted physician, but [he] has impeccable communication skills,” Dr. Warren Ferguson, associate professor in the Department of Family Medicine and Community Health at University of Massachusetts Medical School, told reporters. “[And he] is very unassuming and humble.”

SIM is the same missionary group for which Nancy Writebol had been working when she contracted Ebola in July. Writebol and fellow U.S. Ebola survivor Dr. Kent Brantly, who worked for the aid group Samaritan’s Purse, were evacuated from Liberia to Emory University Hospital in Atlanta for treatment and later declared virus-free after treatment.

Writebol was discharged Aug. 19 and Brantly went home two days later.
PHOTO: A sign for ELWA Hospital is pictured. simusa.org

Since March, the deadly virus has killed 1,552 people and sickened 1,517 others, according to the latest numbers from the World Health Organization.

The virus has sickened at least 240 health workers, half of whom have died, according to WHO.

"Ebola is taking its toll in many ways. It directly kills many who it infects, but indirectly it's killing many more," said ABC News chief health and medical editor Dr. Richard Besser, who just returned from reporting in Monrovia, Liberia.

Emergency rooms are closed, many hospital wards are as well, leaving people who are sick with heart disease, trauma, pregnancy complications, pneumonia, malaria and all the everyday health emergencies with nowhere to go.

"I worry that this latest case, an American doctor contracting Ebola while caring for a maternity patient, will lead overseas groups that are providing non-Ebola support to question whether they can safely do so," Besser added. "These countries need more medical support. Any further reduction would be disastrous."

The Sacra family warned in their statement that without doctors the lack of health care in West Africa could become a crisis.

"There are many people in Liberia who are suffering in this epidemic and others who are not receiving standard health care because clinics and hospitals have been forced to close," according to the statement. "West Africa is on the verge of a humanitarian crisis and the world needs to respond compassionately and generously.”

http://abcnews.go.com/Health/massachuse ... d=25230711


PostPosted: Wed Sep 03, 2014 7:56 pm 

Joined: Wed Aug 19, 2009 10:42 am
Posts: 56044
Location: Pittsburgh, PA USA
Several VIDEOS

Nancy WritebolNIGHTLY NEWS
8 hours
Ebola Survivor Nancy Writebol: All Doctors Could Say Was 'We Are So Sorry'

Nancy Writebol was certain she just had malaria. It was common in Liberia, and she’d been working long hours supporting the team treating Ebola patients, hours that kept her out late in the evenings, when the mosquitoes were most active.

Her fever and achiness could have been early symptoms of Ebola, but she told NBC News in an interview before a press conference Wednesday that they also fit the more common illness.

It was late July and she’d felt well enough to have dinner with her husband and co-worker David, and one of the doctors, in their home in Monrovia. David and the doctor left for an all-staff meeting, and Nancy lay down to rest.

“David came in shortly after they left and he said, ‘Nancy I have something I need to tell you,’” she said in an interview at the Charlotte, North Carolina headquarters of her employer, the missionary group SIM USA. “He said, ‘Nancy, Kent has Ebola,’ and my heart sank. And then David said, ‘and so do you.’”

As the two spoke in separate interviews with NBC News, Dr. Kent Brantly and Nancy Writebol constantly referred to their concern for one another.

Writebol and Brantly are the first two Americans to have conquered the Ebola virus that is ravaging West Africa. It’s taken more than 1,500 lives in Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea. Now it has infected a third American aid worker, another doctor working for SIM.

They both heard the news Tuesday. “My heart sank,” Writebol said. “I just I didn’t have any other words but ‘oh, no.’” She immediately volunteered to head back over to help take care of him, but she isn’t quite well enough yet to do that.

“They are part of the family,” Writebol said, holding tightly to her husband David’s hand as she spoke. “To hear the news is very sad, (knowing) the whole cycle of the progression of the disease and how that story might end.”

Writebol and Brantly came to know that cycle all too well as they lost patient after patient. The two were working side by side, Brantly as a physician and Writebol helping to get doctors and nurses in and out of the protective gear they needed to wear to treat the Ebola patients pouring into their hospital in Monrovia.

They shared a deep Christian faith that led them both to the missionary work, and each had sought to both evangelize and help the needy in some of the most neglected parts of the world. Their two families had spent 10 months together doing just that in Liberia.

And they got infected together, too. They’ll never know precisely when or how, but both feel they couldn’t have been infected in the isolation unit — they took too many precautions.

Writebol had been recruited from SIM’s main offices where she’d welcomed new missionaries and helped their families get settled in. David was running the facility, ensuring lights and plumbing worked.

“My responsibility originally was I was going to mix the bleach solutions,” Writebol said. She ended up helping doctors and nurses suit up before they entered the isolation unit, and then helped them remove the suits correctly when they came out.

It’s a vital job — the layers of gloves, the goggles, the boots, the body suits all protect workers from the virus-laden bodily fluids that spread infection. But all that protection does no good if the doctors and nurses get even a few drops of that contaminated mess on their hands or skin, or in their eyes, as they pull the gear off.

Nancy helped spray everyone down, get the layers off in the right order and then made sure everything got either burned or disinfected.

“I was considered to be in a low-risk zone,” she said. “There was a line, an actual line on the floor that I didn’t cross. When they came out and I decontaminated them, I never touched them. I was wearing a gown, I was wearing gloves, and sometimes I was wearing a mask, but not all the time.” But she always had a gown and gloves on. “There was never a fear that I would be contaminated.”

So when she developed a fever, it never occurred to her that she might have Ebola.

Writebol, 59, had been worried about Brantly, who had become ill about the same time as she did. So it was natural for David to give her the news about Brantly first. And even though she was shocked, Writebol, who has two grown sons and who acted like a surrogate grandmother to Brantly’s young son and daughter, kept practical concerns at the forefront.

“David went to hug me and put his arms around me and I knew how dangerous that was and I said, ‘David — don’t. Just don’t’.”

She heard voices. “I walked into the living room and our doctors were in the living room and all they could say is, ‘We are so sorry, Nancy, we are so sorry.’ All I can remember saying to them is, ‘It is going to be OK.'”

She doesn’t remember feeling afraid. “I don’t think I was being brave,” Nancy said. “Looking back, I just think it had to be the peace of the Lord. There was no fear.”

On and off through their illnesses, Brantly and Writebol were able to speak to each other and to their families. Brantly used his laptop computer; David Writebol stood outside the bedroom window to speak to his wife.

Then Samaritan’s Purse, the missionary organization that Brantly works for, and SIM managed to get a single three-infusion treatment course of an experimental drug called ZMapp. A combination of lab-engineered antibodies, it is specifically designed to boost the body’s immune response to Ebola infection. It had never been tested in humans.

It was offered to Brantly first. He said Nancy should get it. “This was not a heroic decision to sacrifice myself for the sake of Nancy,” Brantly said. “I thought she was older than I am. She’s sicker than I am.”

He called her from his bedroom, where he’d been isolated since he became ill July 23.

“I wasn’t sure I wanted to take it,” Nancy said. “We had a phone conversation and I said, ‘Kent what are you going to do?’” Brantly wasn’t sure.

“I said, ‘If you are not going to take it, I am not going to take it,’” Writebol said. “I wanted to know what his opinion as a doctor was.”

In the end, the doctors decided. Brantly got much sicker. They gave him the first dose, and told him Nancy could take the next two doses.

“My doctors were very concerned I was going to die,” Brantly said.

Then Brantly was flown out of Liberia to Emory University Hospital in Atlanta, where he made headlines by walking from the ambulance into the hospital.

Writebol was in much worse shape for her flight home.

“The night I was evacuated and when they put me on the airplane, I know it was bad. I was bad,” she said.

“When I said goodbye to David, I was not sure that I would ever see him again.” She wasn't vomiting or bleeding, but she was very, very ill.

It was a human touch that restored her spiritual confidence, she said. One of the doctors put her on a baggage conveyor belt to load her on the specially equipped jet that could fly her across the Atlantic safely, without infecting anyone else. “He put his hands around my face and said, ‘Nancy, we’re taking you home.’”

Then, she says, she “felt the Lord.” “I said yes, Lord. You are enough.”

As Nancy Writebol was wheeled into the two-room isolation unit at Emory University Hospital, Brantly struggled to see his friend and colleague.

“I could see through the window,” he said. Their rooms in the isolation unit at Emory faced one another, just a few feet apart. “It broke my heart when I tried to wave to her,” Brantly said. “She was unaware.”

Writebol doesn’t remember much about her arrival at Emory. Not only was she sick, but she was dehydrated and exhausted from having been in full personal protective gear for the entire journey from Liberia.

The doctors at Emory who treated them both agree — it was the supportive care that saved them. ZMapp is experimental and both patients got dosed late. But experience has shown that replacing fluids lost to diarrhea and vomiting, giving antibiotics to prevent other, so-called secondary infections, and watching the levels of red blood cells and critical immune system cells all can save lives.

Writebol doesn’t remember having any special reaction to the ZMapp, but she remembers when she knew should would survive.

“There was a time when the doctors came in and said, ‘You’ve turned the corner,’” she said.

“There was a time when I sensed — I had not been able to get up and walk and there was great pain in my feet, in the bottom of my feet and the top of my toes.”

That did it. “Shortly after that, I said ‘I am just getting up. I am going to the bathroom and take a shower today." And she did.

First published September 3rd 2014, 11:36 am

http://www.nbcnews.com/storyline/ebola- ... we-n194361


PostPosted: Wed Sep 03, 2014 8:50 pm 

Joined: Wed Aug 19, 2009 10:42 am
Posts: 56044
Location: Pittsburgh, PA USA
CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) — The hospital in Liberia where three American aid workers got sick with Ebola has been overwhelmed by a surge in patients and doesn't have enough hazard suits and other supplies to keep doctors and nurses safe, a missionary couple told The Associated Press on Wednesday.

The latest infection -- of Rick Sacra, a doctor who wasn't even working in the hospital's Ebola unit -- shows just how critical protective gear is to containing the deadly epidemic, and how charities alone can't handle the response, they said.

Nancy Writebol and her husband, David, called for reinforcements during the AP interview, which followed her first news conference since recovering from Ebola disease. They work for North Carolina-based SIM, the charity that supports the ELWA hospital in Monrovia, Liberia.

About 250 staffers at the hospital use thousands of disposable protective suits each week, but that's not enough to fully protect the doctors and nurses who must screen people entering the emergency room or treat patients outside the 50-bed Ebola isolation unit, they said.

"We don't have enough personal protective safety equipment to adequately be able to safely diagnose if a patient has Ebola. So they are putting themselves at risk," David Writebol said.

Sacra, 51, a doctor from suburban Boston who spent 15 years doing missionary work in Africa, felt compelled to return to Liberia despite these challenges. As soon as he heard that Dr. Kent Brantly and Nancy Writebol were sick, Sacra called and said "I'm ready to go," SIM President Bruce Johnson said.

Sacra's job was to deliver babies at the hospital and take care of patients who were not infected with Ebola. He followed all the protocols to protect himself, said Will Elthick, the group's operations director in Liberia.

But Sacra got infected nonetheless by the virus that has killed more than 1,900 people and sickened 3,500 in five West African nations.

The disease is spreading faster than the response in part for lack of protective gear, said Tom Kenyon of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. At least $600 million is urgently needed to provide these tools and extra hazard pay so that more doctors and nurses are willing to risk their lives, the World Health Organization said Wednesday.

Health care workers at other West African hospitals have gone on strike demanding more protections, the Writebols said.

"They see colleagues who have fallen. They don't want that to happen to them. But they are saying, 'I can't go to work safely until there is personal protective equipment available -- the right gear, the right procedures in place. And then, if they don't go to work, are they going to get paid?" David Writebol said.

The Writebols left Charlotte for Africa several years ago; David helped with the hospital's technology while Nancy helped dress and disinfect people entering and leaving the Ebola unit at ELWA, which stands for Eternal Love Winning Africa.

Liberians were already struggling to survive when they got there, but with Ebola it's chaos — the number of patients is surging, finding food and supplies is more costly, schools are closed and people with common injuries or even mothers in childbirth can't get care.

Ebola has "overwhelmed the supply chain," David Writebol said. "They can't get equipment in because there aren't any regular flights coming in. Same thing with aid workers from the international community. There are only a limited number of seats available to come into Liberia. ... That's one of the biggest problems -- getting medicine, protective gear and supplies for health care workers who are there."

Nancy Writebol said people who showed up at the emergency room with symptoms were ushered into triage. But health workers were sometimes exposed as they screened patients who may not have known or advertised that they were carrying the virus.

And sometimes, the sick would leave before finding out if they had Ebola. "Those are the people you really worry about going back into the community, because if they are sick with Ebola, it will ultimately spread," she said.

Sacra immediately got tested for Ebola after coming down with a temperature, his brother Doug Sacra told the AP. Like his colleagues he also went into isolation to avoid spreading the virus.

Some other doctors haven't been so rigorous.

The WHO announced today that a doctor in southern Nigeria was exposed by a man who evaded surveillance efforts, and then in turn exposed dozens of others by continuing to treat patients after he became ill. Then he died, and his family and church members followed their funeral traditions by laying their hands on his body.

Now his widow and sister are sick and about 60 others in the city of Port Harcourt are under surveillance.

Sacra, who left his family at home for this latest trip to Africa, was in good spirits Wednesday and able to send emails, Elthick said. That could mean he's physically well enough to be evacuated.

His wife, Debbie, said in a statement that she's focusing on her husband, but she said "Rick would want me to urge you to remember that there are many people in Liberia who are suffering in this epidemic and others who are not receiving standard health care because clinics and hospitals have been forced to close.

"West Africa is on the verge of a humanitarian crisis, and the world needs to respond compassionately and generously," she said.

It's not clear where Sacra would be treated in the U.S. Experts say any fully-equipped hospital that follows safety protocols could prevent an American outbreak while caring for an Ebola patient. But there are four high-level isolation units designed especially to handle dreaded infectious diseases.

The largest is at the Nebraska Medical Center in Omaha, which was told to prepare to receive a patient, but they were told the same thing before Brantly and Writebol were evacuated instead to Emory University Hospital in Atlanta, medical center spokesman Taylor Wilson said Wednesday.

The other two units are National Institutes of Health facilities in Maryland and Montana.

Meanwhile, health care workers in Africa are dealing with the impossible every day.

"To watch so many people suffer and die was horrendous. It was horrible some days," Nancy Writebol said.

"But, to be able to encourage their families and to come alongside families that are grieving, there's hope in that. And, to be able to see a survivor? I mean, oh my goodness. To watch that little boy walk out as a survivor and then to see another child who survived and then to hear -- even today -- that 12 walked out, that's what it's about."


Associated Press Writers Mike Stobbe in New York, Denise Lavoie in Boston and Krista Larson in Dakar, Senegal, contributed to this report.

http://hosted2.ap.org/FLJAJ/f7ded15e4d4 ... d5372ca1ef


PostPosted: Wed Sep 03, 2014 9:33 pm 

Joined: Mon Sep 28, 2009 10:19 pm
Posts: 4059
It looks likely that it was indeed a pregnant patient who infected Dr. Sacra.

http://www.foxnews.com/health/2014/09/0 ... colleague/
Latest US doc to get Ebola skipped protective gear in 100-degree heat, says colleague
By Paul Tilsley
September 03, 2014

JOHANNESBURG, South Africa – The latest U.S. doctor to contract Ebola in Africa was working with outpatients in 100-degree temperatures that made it difficult to wear protective gear when he was exposed to an obstetrics patient stricken with the deadly disease, said another American physician who worked in the same hospital.

Dr. Rick Sacra, a 51-year-old physician from Massachusetts, was working in the obstetrics unit of the massive Elwa Hospital in the Liberian capital of Monrovia, far from the Ebola unit, said Dr. Jeff Deal, a South Carolina doctor who traveled to Liberia to help battle the crisis engulfing much of Africa. Doctors and other health care workers often do not wear protective gear in the general part of the hospital, most of which has no air conditioning. With high temperatures compounded by equatorial humidity, many doctors and healthcare workers outside of the Ebola unit skip protective gear.

"I was pretty shocked when I heard," Deal said. "At first I thought should I isolate myself, but now I have been a little comforted that I have been wearing protective clothing at all times, and no one who has followed the proper protocols has fallen sick.”

Although the hospital's Ebola Treatment Unit is sanitized constantly, including through the use of an ultraviolet ray-emitting machine Deal arranged for, outpatients who see workers in other parts of the facility, who have not been diagnosed and may be in denial about their symptoms— often come in contact with unprotected staff, Deal said.

Nurses at the hospital went on strike Monday, in part for better pay due to hazardous conditions, but also for access to more complete protective gear.

In the latest case, Sacra was treating a patient for an obstetric condition and told staff the woman was "highly suspicious" and displaying Ebola symptoms.

Doctors Without Borders, the medical charity that runs the Ebola unit, use three-layered, disposable uniforms that include a hood, boots, apron, bib, gloves and goggles. Deal said working in the suits is exhausting, and doctors can last little more than 3-4 hours in them. Deal said it takes more than 30 minutes to get out of the suit, and a bleach solution must be applied on each newly-exposed layer.

Sacra, who is a missionary with SIM USA, a faith-based charity headquartered in Charlotte, N.C., isolated himself in the hospital's Ebola unit immediately after experiencing symptoms and is doing well, according to officials with SIM, which originally stood for Sudan Interior Mission when it was founded in 1893.

"My heart was deeply saddened, but my faith was not shaken, when I learned another of our missionary doctors contracted Ebola," said Bruce Johnson, president of SIM USA. "As a global mission, we are surrounding our missionary with prayer, as well as our Liberian SIM/ELWA colleagues, who continue fighting the Ebola epidemic in Liberia. We have gifted Liberian doctors, medical staff and support staff who are carrying on the fight."

Deal said Sacra will be treated with a balance of electrolytes and intravenous nutrition and likely has the same survival outlook as those who have been brought back to the U.S. for treatment. He said the high mortality rate for Africans is likely due to delays in getting treatment and the fact that patients may have other diseases, including malaria or dengue fever.

Deal said Sacra will likely be brought back to the U.S. in the event his condition worsens.

PostPosted: Wed Sep 03, 2014 9:56 pm 

Joined: Wed Aug 19, 2009 10:42 am
Posts: 56044
Location: Pittsburgh, PA USA
(MENAFN - AFP) One of two US missionaries in West Africa who survived Ebola spoke out for the first time Wednesday, thanking God for her recovery but admitting she went through "dark days."
Nancy Writebol, looking well, commented as the Christian group SIM USA she worked for in Liberia identified another American who contracted the often deadly disease while serving in Monrovia, the capital of the hard-hit country.

"God is writing this, and I just want to express first of all my appreciation to the Lord for his grace, for his mercy, and for his saving of my life," Writebol, smiling often, said at a televised news conference in Charlotte, North Carolina.

But "there were many mornings I woke up and thought I'm alive and there were many times when I thought I don't think I'm going to make it anymore."

While saying she felt no fear when she found out that she had caught the virus, Writebol acknowledged "there were some very, very, very dark days" that followed.

Writebol contracted Ebola in July as the largest outbreak in history - which so far has killed more than 1,500 people according to the World Health Organization - swept through West Africa.

She was subsequently airlifted to Emory University Hospital in Atlanta, Georgia, for treatment in a special isolation unit and released on August 19 away from the cameras.

Footage of her arrival at the hospital showed her strapped to a stretcher in protective gear, raising concerns about her chances for recovery.

Writebol's fate is similar to that of fellow missionary Kent Brantly who was also airlifted from Liberia to Atlanta and released last month in good health.

Bruce Johnson, the president of SIM USA, meanwhile identified the third American Ebola victim as 51-year-old veteran doctor Rick Sacra who volunteered to go to Liberia when Writebol and Brantly tested positive.

"He was caring for pregnant women, delivering babies by C-section and natural birth. Interesting, here is a doctor bringing new life into Liberia as death is surrounding us," Johnson said at the same news conference.

Johnson said his group was cooperating with US health authorities to determine how Sacra, who is from Massachusetts, got sick.

While stressing there was no confirmation at this time, Johnson said there was a chance Sacra - who had been working in obstetrics at the SIM-funded ELWA hospital - caught the virus from someone who had yet to show signs of the disease.

"They check patients at our hospital before admittance for Ebola symptoms and there's a strong possibility that the Ebola symptoms were masked and not presenting themselves with a particular patient who was admitted and cared for and possibly this was how Dr Sacra contracted it," he said.

http://www.menafn.com/1093937843/Ebola- ... ctim-named


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