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First case of Ebola found in Britain

By Agence France-Presse in Glasgow | China Daily | Updated: 2014-12-31 07:45

Patient confirmed as healthcare worker recently returned from west Africa

A healthcare worker recently back from Sierra Leone was diagnosed with Ebola on Monday by doctors in Scotland's largest city, the first diagnosis of the deadly virus in Britain during the current outbreak.

Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon confirmed that the patient was a female health worker who had been working on the "front line" with Ebola patients, and was currently in a stable condition in hospital.

The patient returned to Scotland late on Sunday via Casablanca and London Heathrow, arriving at Glasgow Airport at around 11:30 pm, according to a Scottish government news release.

She was admitted to Gartnavel Hospital campus on Monday after feeling unwell and placed in isolation at 7:50 am.

"All possible contacts with the patient are now being investigated and anyone deemed to be at risk will be contacted and closely monitored," the government said.

"However, having been diagnosed in the early stages of the illness, the risk to others is considered extremely low."

Alastair McConchie from the Scottish health service explained that the patient had been transferred using a specialist ambulance service and was "not showing any great clinical concern".

The patient was being treated in the hospital's Brownlee Unit for Infectious Diseases but a transfer was being arranged to move her to the high level isolation unit in London's Royal Free hospital "as soon as possible", according to protocol laid down by the government in London.

'Negligible risk'

British Prime Minister David Cameron later said that "all measures would be taken to protect public health".

The Scottish government is currently contacting the 71 other people on board the British Airways flight from London to Glasgow, but stressed there was "negligible risk" as the patient "displayed no symptoms" of the type that could cause transmission.

"Our first thoughts at this time must be with the patient diagnosed with Ebola and their friends and family. I wish them a speedy recovery," Sturgeon said at a news conference.

Scotland remains part of the United Kingdom following September's referendum, but has autonomy over its health service.

However, it has agreed to send any Ebola patients to the highly-specialized London unit.

The death toll from the Ebola outbreak in west Africa has risen to 7,842 out of 20,081 cases recorded, the World Health Organization said on Monday.

AFP - AP - Xinhua

First case of Ebola found in Britain

 First case of Ebola found in Britain

An Ebola patient is put on a transport plane at Glasgow Airport in Scotland on Tuesday, to be transported to London. Provided By Reuters

(China Daily 12/31/2014 page12)

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