Ebola Patient In Italy Gets Experimental Treatment

In this photo provided by the Italian Air Force, a doctor who has tested positive for the Ebola virus lies on a stretcher encased in a plastic seal, at the Pratica di Mare military airport near Rome, Tuesday, Nov. 25, 2014. The Italian health ministry says an Italian doctor working in Sierra Leone has tested positive for the Ebola virus and has been transferred to Rome for treatment. The ministry said in a statement that the doctor, who works for the non-governmental organization Emergency, will be taken Monday for treatment at the Lazzaro Spallanzani National Institute for Infectious Diseases in Rome. It is Italy's first confirmed case of Ebola. (AP Photo/Italian Air Force)

According to the AP, an Italian doctor who contracted Ebola while working in Sierra Leone arrived in Italy and is being treated with the same experimental drugs used in the U.S. and other European countries.

Rome doctors declined to identify the antiviral drug used for treatment, though they said the drug has been used before in the U.S. and Europe.

The doctor, whose name wasn’t released, is in his 50s and has Italy’s first confirmed case of Ebola.  He arrived at a Rome military air base early Tuesday and was transported in a hazard-safe equipped ambulance to Lazzaro Spallanzani hospital, a Rome hospital that specializes in infectious diseases.

His condition is ’’stable,’’ doctor Emanuele Nicastri said at a press conference at the hospital. ’’He’s conscious and collaborating’’ with the medical team.

More than 15,000 people have been infected with Ebola and 5,420 have died, according to the World Health Organization.

Clinical Trials For Ebola Medicine To Start In Africa Next Month; Death Toll At 5,160

Ebola healthcare workers are trained on ways to treat infected patients at the Siaka Stevens Stadium in Freetown, Sierra Leone, 12 November 2014

According to the BBC, clinical trials to try to find an effective treatment for Ebola patients are to start in West Africa next month.

Meanwhile, the number of people killed by the worst outbreak of Ebola has risen to 5,160, the World Health Organization (WHO) says.

The medical charity Medicins Sans Frontieres (Doctors Without Borders), which has been helping lead the fight against the virus, says three of its treatment centres will host three separate research projects.

Meanwhile, Liberia’s President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf has lifted the state of emergency imposed in the country.  She warned “this is not because the fight against Ebola is over”.

It marks the progress being made in the country, where the weekly number of new infections is falling.  In Guinea, the frequency of new cases no longer appears to be increasing, but remains high in Sierra Leone.

In a radio address she told the nation that night curfews would be reduced, weekly markets could take place and preparations were being made for the re-opening of schools.

Ebola-Free Doctor Released From Hospital: Score One For Obama?

After all of the blaming, quarantining, and media treachery, the last U.S. Ebola patient, Dr. Craig Spencer, was released from Bellevue Hospital in New York this morning.

He took the opportunity to remind everyone the real crisis is in West Africa.

Video by New York Daily News.

New York Doctor Who Had Ebola To Be Released Tuesday


According to Boston.com and The New York Times, Dr. Craig Spencer, the New York City-based doctor who contracted Ebola after treating patients in Sierra Leone with Doctors Without Borders, will be released from Bellevue Hospital Tuesday morning in New York City.

Dr. Spencer was diagnosed with Ebola on Oct. 23 at Bellevue after 10 days of self-monitoring.


The Last Known Case Of Ebola In The U.S. Is Getting Better: Will Republicans Give Obama Credit?

Dr.CraigSpencer1Dr. Craig Spencer is the only confirmed case of Ebola in the U.S.  The New York City doctor is continuing to improve and has been playing the banjo in his hospital room, hospital officials said Thursday.

A spokeswoman for the city Health and Hospitals Corporation says Dr. Spencer requested the banjo and an exercise bike and has been using both.

He has been in an isolation room at Bellevue Hospital since Oct. 23.

The agency’s president, Dr. Ram Raju, said Spencer “continues to be stable and making good progress.”

Spencer tested positive for Ebola after treating patients in the West African nation of Guinea with Doctors Without Borders.

Spencer’s condition was upgraded from serious to stable over the weekend, and Raju said Thursday that officials hope Spencer’s isolation can be lifted soon.

His fiancée, Morgan Dixon, is in quarantine at the couple’s Manhattan apartment. Quarantine has been lifted for friends who had socialized with the couple.

Other people in the U.S. are being monitored for possible Ebola.

Most of those are travelers who arrived within the past 21 days from Guinea, Liberia or Sierra Leone, the three Ebola-affected countries.

So, after media outcry, hysteria, and blame, will people now give President Obama credit that no more Ebola cases have spread?

President Requests $6.18 Billion To Fight Ebola

Obama1President Barack Obama on Wednesday asked Congress for $6.18 billion in emergency funds to confront Ebola at its source in West Africa and to secure the United States against any possible spread.

In a letter sent to House Speaker John Boehner on Wednesday, the president called anti-Ebola efforts an issue of national security.

Administration officials say $2 billion of the total would be apportioned to the United States Agency for International Development and $2.4 billion would go to the Department of Health and Human Services. More than $1.5 billion would be for a contingency fund to deal with any unanticipated developments like a flare-up in West Africa or a need to vaccinate U.S. health care workers.

Immediate spending would be used to strengthen the public health system in the U.S., combat the epidemic in West Africa, and speed up the development and testing of vaccines and other therapies. The money also would be used to help vulnerable foreign countries detect and respond to the disease.

The administration would establish more than 50 Ebola treatment centers throughout the country, procure safety suits, and more strictly monitor travelers on their arrival in the U.S.

The White House is asking for prompt action, meaning it wants approval during the current lame duck session, while Democrats are still in control of the Senate.

Republicans already control the House, but conservatives won’t officially takeover control of the Senate until next January. Already the parties have vocally disagreed with each other about instituting a travel ban and on how to handle aid workers who return to the U.S. after providing medical assistance in West Africa.

Person Being Tested For Ebola In Northern Ireland

Coloured transmission electron micro graph of a single Ebola virus, the cause of Ebola fever

According to The Guardian, a person who recently returned from west Africa is being tested in a Northern Irish hospital for Ebola.

The Royal Victoria hospital in Belfast has isolated the patient according to the Public Health Agency (PHA) on Sunday.

The patient has already tested positive for malaria while a blood sample will confirm whether they have also contracted Ebola.

Nursing staff at the west Belfast hospital are wearing protective clothing while caring for the patient, in accordance with new safety measures.

“The patient being treated in the Royal Victoria hospital, Belfast, has tested positive for malaria, and an Ebola test is being done as a precautionary measure,” a PHA statement said. “The PHA is liaising with colleagues and has advised that there is no increased risk to the wider community.”

The PHA stressed that the likelihood of contracting Ebola was extremely low unless the person had come into contact with blood or body fluids of a symptomatic person, adding that the risk to the public was low.

The agency added that it was in contact with the rest of the health service in the region.

More Ebola Hysteria: Threats Were Made Against Boyfriend of Hickox

KaciHickox3Currently, there is only one diagnosed case of Ebola in the U.S. – that of Dr. Craig Spencer in New York.

Ebola first came to the U.S. on August 2nd, when Dr. Kent Brantly returned to the U.S. from working in West Africa.

That didn’t stop people from making threats against nurse Kaci Hickox and her boyfriend Ted Wilbur in Fort Kent, Maine.

Tom Pelletier, Fort Kent’s chief of police, said he had received calls from people who wanted him to arrest Hickox, local media reported.

Wilbur told the Press Herald newspaper that he has withdrawn from his nursing program at the University of Maine at Fort Kent because university officials were not doing enough to stop threats against him.

The couple has decided to move out of state.

Kaci Hickox, the nurse who defied a mandatory Ebola quarantine in Maine and cast a spotlight on what critics saw as an overreaction to the dangers posed by health workers returning from West Africa, plans to move out of state, it was reported Saturday.

Hickox and her boyfriend, Ted Wilbur, are leaving Fort Kent after Monday, the last day of the disease’s 21-day incubation period and the day when a judge’s order that she be monitored for the disease expires, The Associated Press reported.

The Portland Press Herald reported that the couple will move to another state, and that Wilbur recently withdrew from an accelerated nursing program at the University of Maine, also in Fort Kent.

Hickox has shown no signs of the deadly disease that has killed nearly 5,000 people in the West African countries of Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea.

She was briefly placed into isolation in New Jersey upon her arrival on Oct. 24 from Sierra Leone where she was treating Ebola patients, and then allowed to travel to Maine, where the governor and health officials had sought to impose a mandatory quarantine. But a judge refused to impose that order, and instead allowed her to leave her home as long as she was monitored for symptoms.

New Information On Ebola In Africa

Nov 5th 2014, 21:39 BY ECONOMIST.COM

Ebola was first discovered in the DRC in 1976. The first reported case in the Ebola outbreak ravaging West Africa dates back to December 2013, in Guéckédou, a forested area of Guinea near the border with Liberia and Sierra Leone.

Travellers took it across the border: by late March, Liberia had reported eight suspected cases and Sierra Leone six. By the end of June 759 people had been infected and 467 people had died from the disease, making this the worst ever Ebola outbreak.

The numbers keep climbing in West Africa. As of November 2nd, 13,042 cases and 4,818 deaths had been reported worldwide, the vast majority of them in these same three countries. Many suspect these estimates are underestimated.

An interactive map of the virus’s current global reach is here.

The rate at which cases give rise to subsequent cases, which epidemiologists call R0, is the key variable in the spread of Ebola.

For easily transmitted diseases R0 can be high; for measles it is 18. Ebola is much harder to catch: estimates of R0 in different parts of the outbreak range from 1.5 to 2.2. Although there are some signs that the virus is gradually being brought under control in Guinea and Liberia, any R0 above 1 is bad news.

The inadequacies of the health-care systems in the three most-affected countries help to explain how the Ebola outbreak got so dangerous.

Spain, which has gone 21 days without a new case following its first locally transmitted case in early October, spends over $3,000 per person at purchasing-power parity on health care; for Sierra Leone, the figure is just under $300.

The United States, which suffered its first Ebola fatality on October 8th, has 245 doctors per 100,000 people; Guinea has ten. The particular vulnerability of health-care workers to Ebola is therefore doubly tragic: as of November 2nd there had been 546 cases among medical staff in the three west African countries, and 310 deaths.

Ebola is not just a medical emergency, but an economic one. Sick people cannot work; fear of sickness keeps others from coming to work. Transportation and travel is disrupted.

An impact assessment by the World Bank, released on October 8th, estimated the short-term impact of the outbreak on the economies of Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone in terms of forgone GDP at $359m.

Depending on whether the outbreak is contained quickly or slowly, the damage will continue into next year; under the Bank’s gloomier “High Ebola” scenario, the economic loss to Liberia in 2015 would be the equivalent of 12% of GDP.