UK health worker tests positive for Ebola

UK health worker tests positive for Ebola

A UK military healthcare worker in Sierra Leone has tested positive for Ebola.

Public Health England said the worker, who is reported to be female, is being assessed by medical experts while a decision is made about whether to bring them back to the UK.

The Ministry of Defence said the worker is currently being treated in the specialist Ebola treatment centre in Kerry Town.

Up to 700 British military personnel have been working in the west African country to aid the Ebola crisis.

British nurses Pauline Cafferkey and Will Pooley both survived the highly-contagious disease after contracting it while treating patients in Sierra Leone last year.

More than 9,960 people have died from the Ebola outbreak in West Africa, according to the latest figures from the World Health Organisation (WHO).

The outbreak has been raging for more than a year, with Sierra Leone, Guinea and Liberia being the worst affected countries where more than 24,000 confirmed and suspected cases have been reported.

But the epidemic has shown signs of slowing down in recent months and Liberia released its last Ebola patient from a treatment centre last week.

The Ministry of Defence spokeswoman said: “A clinical decision on whether the individual will be medically evacuated to the UK for treatment will be taken in due course.

“Their next of kin have been informed and we will not be providing any further details at the current time.

“Despite there being stringent procedures and controls in place to safeguard UK service personnel, there is always a level of risk in deployments on operations of this type”.

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