The first U.S. Ebola victim has been identified as Thomas Eric Duncan, a resident of Monrovia in his mid-40s. Many Americans became fearful Tuesday after it was revealed that someone had contracted the Ebola virus in the U.S.
Although Duncan developed symptoms in the U.S., he apparently contracted the disease in Liberia. He reportedly had direct contact with someone who was stricken with the Ebola virus on Sept. 15, just four days before he departed Liberia to head to the United States, senior Liberian government officials said.
Duncan might have contracted Ebola while trying to save a pregnant woman’s life, reported the New York Times. Duncan helped take the woman, Marthalene Williams, 19, to the hospital by taxi in Monrovia, Liberia. She was convulsing and seven months pregnant. When they arrived, the hospital said there was not enough room for her in the Ebola treatment ward, so they were forced to return home. She died hours later, around 3 a.m. Sept. 20. Two other people who came into contact with Williams contracted Ebola and died, the Heavy added.
Duncan, who was a family friend of Williams, sat in the front of the taxi while Williams, her father and brother were in the back seat. Her family said Duncan helped carry Williams, who could not walk, back to the family home that night.
Duncan was on his first visit to the U.S. to visit his sister Mai Wureh in Texas, My Fox Dallas reported. He used to work for a shipping company but resigned in September 2014, the Times wrote. He decided to go to the U.S. after he was able to get a tourist visa.
Duncan arrived in the U.S. on Sept. 20 and began to feel ill on Sept. 24. He went to a Dallas emergency room on Friday and was given antibiotics. Still ailing, he was admitted to Texas Presbyterian hospital Sunday and diagnosed with Ebola Tuesday.
Duncan reportedly had contact with five kids who attend four different schools, a statement from the Dallas Independent School district said. The children are not exhibiting any symptoms but were advised to stay home.
Doctors have not revealed what is being done to treat the Ebola victim. There reportedly is not any ZMapp, which is the experimental drug used to treat Ebola patients, available to them.
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