For the first time, a person has contracted the Ebola virus outside of West Africa — a nurse working at a Madrid hospital where two other Ebola patients were treated after contracting the disease in Africa, CNN is reporting.
The unnamed nurse was part of a team that treated two Ebola patients — missionary Manuel García Viejo and priest August Miguel Pajares, according to The New York Times — at Madrid’s Carlos III Hospital. Both of those Ebola patients later died.
According to BBC News, Spain’s health minister Ana Mato confirmed, via a televised news conference, that the assistant nurse had tested positive for Ebola twice, and the rest of the team that treated the two Ebola patients are also being tested. Spanish officials are also trying to track down anyone else who may have had contact with the infected nurse.
“Both the health ministry and public health authorities are working together to give the best care to the patient and to guarantee the safety of all citizens.”
The Madrid nurse’s case is one of a handful of confirmed Ebola cases outside of West Africa, including one confirmed case in the U.S.: Thomas Eric Duncan of Dallas, according to this Inquisitr report. Until today, all of the known cases of Ebola outside of Africa involved people who contracted the disease in Africa.
The news comes as governments around the world, inside and outside of Africa, attempt to contain the Ebola virus. In the United States, the chances of an Ebola outbreak are rare, according to President Barack Obama. Still, efforts to contain the virus — especially at points of vulnerability, such as airports and border crossings — are under way.
“We’re also going to be working on protocols to do additional passenger screening, both at the source and here in the United States. Here in the United States, at least, the chances of an outbreak — of an epidemic here — are extraordinarily low.”
However, Texas governor Rick Perry does not believe the Obama administration is doing enough to stop Ebola in the U.S., especially at borders, according to CNN.
“We appreciate and we applaud the assistance we’ve received from the Centers for Disease Control and other federal agencies we’ve worked with… Washington needs to take immediate steps to minimize the dangers of Ebola and other infectious diseases.”
As of this post, the Spanish nurse who contracted Ebola outside of Africa is in stable condition.
[Image courtesy of: La Marea]