Health officials in Madrid say that three more people are in the hospital on suspicion of contracting Ebola. The news comes a day after a nurse at a city hospital became infected with the disease. The nurse is now being treated with a drip using antibodies from those previously infected with the virus, Reuters report
RT reports (Source link): Approximately 22 contacts of the woman, often referred to as the ‘Spanish Ebola nurse,’ have been identified and are being monitored, Madrid health officials told a press conference on Tuesday.
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The officials added that the hospitalized include the nurse’s husband, another health worker and a traveler who had spent time in one of he affected West African countries.
The 44-year-old woman is the first known person to have become infected with Ebola outside of Africa during the current outbreak. Other cases in Spain – or more recently, the US – involved individuals contracting the disease while in Africa and then traveling abroad.The nurse had reportedly helped treat a Spanish missionary and a Spanish priest, both of whom came down with the virus while in West Africa and later died after returning to Spain.
There is currently no cure or human-safe vaccine for Ebola, which is spread via bodily fluids. Initial symptoms of fever and sore throat develop into vomiting, diarrhea and profuse internal and external bleeding. Victims may die of multiple organ failure within days of first contact, with some strains killing up to 90 percent of sufferers.
The latest outbreak first struck the West African state of Guiana in December 20123. World Health Organization (WHO) officials, however, did not become aware the disease was raging in the country’s south until March 23, 2014. It has since spread to neighboring Senegal, Liberia and Sierra Leone and Nigeria. Due to a rapid response by authorities in Nigeria and Senegal, infections in both states combined were kept below two dozen.
Apart from Spain, the United States is the only other non-African country to register a case of Ebola. On September 20, an infected man traveling from Liberia arrived in Dallas, Texas. He reportedly started exhibiting symptoms of the disease 4 days later. US health officials are currently monitoring 10 quarantined people who had contact with the man, who remains in critical condition.