Voice of America (Washington, DC)

3 August 2014

Liberia: U.S. Doctor Infected With Ebola 'Improving'

Photo: Samaritan's Purse
Dr. Brantly makes chlorine solution for disinfection at the case management center at ELWA Hospital in Monrovia before he was infected with the virus.

A top U.S. health official says that the American doctor who contracted the deadly Ebola virus in Liberia "seems to be improving."

The head of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Tom Frieden, said Sunday that he cannot predict the future for individual patients, but that it is encouraging that Dr. Kent Brantly appears to be getting better.

Brantly, with help, was able to walk into a hospital in the southern U.S. state of Georgia on Saturday after a flight from Africa in a special isolation unit. He had been in Liberia working for a Christian charity responding to the worst Ebola outbreak on record, with more than 700 people in West Africa dying from the infection.

One of Brantly's colleagues, missionary Nancy Writebol, contracted Ebola alongside him and is also expected to be returned to the U.S. for treatment in Tuesday.

Frieden told CBS's Face the Nation program that a widespread outbreak of the disease in the U.S. is unlikely because the United States has better infection controls in hospitals and burial procedures than in Africa.

Ebola is a hemorrhagic virus with a death rate of up to 90 percent of those infected. The death rate in the current epidemic has been about 60 percent.

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