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Deadly virus Ebola patient to be brought to Geneva

A Cuban nurse engaged in a practice drill in Havana before heading out Sierra Leone to fight the Ebola outbreak

(Keystone)

A Cuban doctor infected by the Ebola virus in Sierra Leone is expected in Geneva within the next 48 hours for treatment. He was part of a team of 165 Cuban medical professionals combatting the spread of the virus in the African country.

The Federal Office of Public Health confirmed on Wednesday that the Ebola patient – the first in Switzerland - will be received at the Geneva University Hospital, which is equipped to deal with such cases.

The infected person will be placed in a negative pressure room in a building that is detached from the rest of the hospital and will be treated by a specialist in infectious diseases. The communique also states that the Swiss population is not at risk.

According to Swiss public television RTS, the patient’s arrival has also been confirmed by the World Health Organization and the Cuban ambassador.

Jorge Delgado Butillo, head of the Cuban medical team in Sierra Leone, revealed that the 43-year-old patient was feverish on Sunday but did not display any other Ebola symptoms. He was transferred to the Red Cross centre in Kerry Town where he tested positive for Ebola.

“He is not in a critical condition,” Butillo said. “We have no idea how he could have been infected and are investigating this.”

Butillo added that the Cuban team would continue to work in the country and that the infection would only ensure that they take more precautions.

So far, Sierra Leone has a total of 5,586 registered cases of Ebola and a death toll of 1,187.

swissinfo.ch and agencies

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