WASHINGTON, August 21 (RIA Novosti) – Dr. Kent Brantly and Nancy Writebol, two American medical workers who got infected with the deadly Ebola virus while working in Liberia, have been released from Emory Hospital in Atlanta, Bruce Ribner, the medical director of the hospital, said Thursday.
“Dr. Brantly has recovered from the Ebola virus infection and can return to his community and to his life without public health concerns to the general public and poses no public health threat,” said Dr. Ribner.
Writebol was discharged from Emory Hospital on Tuesday, Dr. Ribner added.
“We are tremendously pleased with Dr. Brantly and Mrs. Writebol’s recovery, and we are pleased we could provide the proper training to care for their needs,” Dr. Ribner said.
Dr. Kent Brantly thanked his medical team and called Thursday “a miraculous day.”
“Thank you for your support through this whole ordeal. My family and I will now be going away for a period of time to reconnect, decompress and continue to recover physically and emotionally. After I have recovered a little more and regained some of my strength, we will look forward to sharing more of our story,” Br. Brantly told reporters as he was released.
Dr. Brantly, 33, contracted the disease while working in a Liberian Ebola ward with the Christian aid agency Samaritan’s Purse. Nancy Writebol, 59, who was working as a hygienist in Liberia's capital Monrovia, was the second American aid worker to contract the deadly Ebola virus. The Americans were the first humans to receive the experimental drug ZMapp.
According to Samaritan’s Purse, Brantly’s condition started to improve dramatically within an hour after being treated with ZMapp. The drug, developed by San Diego-based biotech company Mapp Biopharmaceutical, has already shown promise in trials involving monkeys.
The number of deaths from the Ebola virus disease in the West African countries of Liberia, Nigeria, Guinea and Sierra Leone spiked to 1,350, the World Health Organization (WHO) reported Wednesday.
Ebola hemorrhagic fever is a deadly disease transmitted through direct contact with the blood or bodily fluids of the infected. There is no licensed treatment or vaccine for the Ebola virus, which has a case fatality rate of up to 90 percent.
Last week, the WHO concluded that it is ethical to use experimental drugs to treat patients infected with the Ebola virus.