Nancy Writebol, the second American missionary worker who was diagnosed with the Ebola virus is now confined at the Emory University Hospital in Atlanta, Georgia. Writebol, 59, arrived at the Bangor International Airport in Maine at around 8 a.m. EST, Tuesday, August 5. This comes two days after Dr. Kent Brantly, the first American Ebola patient and a co-worker of Writebol, arrived in the country.
Ms. Writebol boarded a private air ambulance and arrived at the hospital in a motorcade backed up by police cars. David, Nancy’s husband, is still in Liberia, but says he is very thankful to the U.S. government for helping his wife. He is expected to follow her as soon as possible. Their children, Jeremy and Brian, are allowed to visit their mother.
“Nancy is still very, very weak and shows continued, but slow improvement. She is showing signs of progress and moving in the right direction,” SIM USA President Bruce Johnson was quoted in a statement, noting that there are a lot of reasons not to lose hope.
“Nancy had yogurt before getting on the plane. When she was put aboard the aircraft about 1 a.m. Monrovia time today, they took her there on a stretcher, but she could stand up and walk with assistance onto the plane,” Johnson added.
Writebol will join Dr. Kent Brantly, a 33-year old doctor who was working in Liberia for Samaritan’s Purse, an evangelical Christian humanitarian organization. Dr. Brantly, who arrived in Atlanta on Saturday, was believed to be the first American to be infected by the deadly Ebola virus. Amber Brantly, wife of Brantly, says her husband “continues to improve” but did not provide additional details.
Earlier, the return of Dr. Brantly and Ms. Writebol received criticisms from across the country including billionaire Donald Trump. There have been speculations that the patients could possibly infect others. This is despite the fact that Emory University Hospital officials insist there is a specially built isolation unit to treat Ebola patients, one of the four similar facilities in the U.S.
It was not clear how the two Americans got infected with the virus. But it is known that both of them have worked with Ebola patients in Liberia. The current Ebola outbreak in West Africa began in Guinea in March of this year, and has spread to Sierra Leone and Liberia. The World Health Organization (WHO) reported confirmed 1009 cases and 574 casualties, as of August 1, 2014.