Ebola patient out of high-risk unit

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The Norwegian woman who was infected with the deadly ebola virus while working in Sierra Leone early this month has improved so much that doctors at Oslo University Hospital were releasing her from the hospital’s high-isolation ward on Monday. 

Oslo University Hospital Ullevål released this photo earlier this month of the special high isolation ward where the ebola patient was being treated. PHOTO: Oslo Universitetssykehus/Anders Bayer

Oslo University Hospital Ullevål released this photo earlier this month of the special high isolation ward where the ebola patient was being treated. PHOTO: Oslo Universitetssykehus/Anders Bayer

The hospital confirmed a report  on Dagbladet.no Monday afternoon that the woman was now out of its high-risk unit in the infectious diseases division at Ullevål. Both the hospital and Leger uten grenser, the Norwegian chapter of Medecins Sans Frontieres for which she was working, were planning to hold a press conference on the woman’s condition and further treatment Monday evening.

Officials at Leger uten grenser said they were delighted that their colleague, who had been treating ebola patients in Sierra Leone when she caught the virus herself, was on the road to recovery.

She was diagnosed quickly and flown by special air ambulance home to Norway on October 7 to begin treatment at Oslo University Hospital Ullevål. Staff there had been training for months to handle ebola patients and claimed they were well-prepared to receive her.

They also used an experimental drug to treat her that apparently was successful. More details of her treatment and prognosis were expected to be revealed later in the day.

Leger uten grenser reported over the weekend that after an investigation into how she became ill, they now believe she was infected in the patient reception area at the organization’s clinic in Sierra Leone. Four employees at the clinic were infected in early October. Two have since died.

Doctors would initially release little information about how their ebola patient, Norway’s first, was doing, but reported late last week that she was showing signs of improvement.

(For more on the patient’s recovery, click here.)

newsinenglish.no/Nina Berglund