NYC doctor infected with Ebola to be released from hospital
A New York doctor who was diagnosed with Ebola after working with patients in West Africa will be released on Tuesday from a hospital where he has been treated for the disease, the hospital said.
Dr. Craig Spencer, 33, had been held in isolation in Bellevue Hospital Center since he was diagnosed with Ebola on Oct. 23, after working with patients in Guinea with Médecins Sans Frontières.
Spencer will join Mayor Bill de Blasio and other city officials and Bellevue staff at a news conference on Tuesday morning, the hospital said. Spencer is expected to make a statement but not take questions, the hospital said.
Spencer’s diagnosis followed trips on the subway to eat out and go bowling with friends, provoking alarm, which public-health experts said was unfounded, about the possible spread of the virus in the city.
Ebola has killed more than 4,950 people since it broke out in West Africa earlier this year, according to the World Health Organization. The bulk of the cases and deaths have come in Sierra Leone, Liberia and Guinea.
Spencer is one of a handful of American health workers exposed to Ebola while working in West Africa, the site of the worst outbreak of the disease on record.
In North Carolina, health officials said on Monday a missionary doctor deemed to be at “some risk” for developing the disease after returning from Liberia had been placed under a 21-day quarantine.
It was the second quarantine for Dr. John Fankhauser, 52, a family physician from Ventura, California, who officials said has shown no signs of the virus since arriving in Charlotte, Christian mission group SIM USA said.
In far northern Maine, a nurse who treated Ebola patients in West Africa and publicly fought quarantine orders in New Jersey and Maine after returning to the United States last month planned to move from her home after her quarantine expired on Monday, according to local media.
The nurse, Kaci Hickox, and her boyfriend, Ted Wilbur, told local media they had faced some harrassment since her arrival in Fort Kent and wanted to move someplace they could live quietly.
Hickox had feuded with New Jersey Governor Chris Christie and Maine Governor Paul LePage, saying the limits they sought to impose on her movements were not grounded in science.
Medical experts say Ebola can be transmitted only through the bodily fluid of a person who is exhibiting symptoms.
(Reporting by Jonathan Allen; Writing by Scott Malone; Editing by Sandra Maler)