Scotland Confirms Case of Ebola
(CNN) — Health officials in Glasgow, Scotland, have confirmed a case of Ebola.
“The patient is a health care worker who was helping to combat the disease in West Africa” and returned from Sierra Leone late Sunday night, the Scottish health agency NHS Scotland said in a statement.
The patient flew via Casablanca, Morocco, and London Heathrow Airport, arriving at Glasgow Airport on a British Airways flight around 11:30 p.m., the statement said.
“The patient was admitted to hospital early in the morning after feeling unwell and was placed into isolation at 7.50 a.m. All possible contacts with the patient are now being investigated and anyone deemed to be at risk will be contacted and closely monitored. However, having been diagnosed in the very early stages of the illness, the risk to others is considered extremely low.”
Nicola Sturgeon, Scotland’s head of government, led a meeting of the Scottish Government Resilience Committee “to ensure all necessary steps are being taken,” and she spoke with British Prime Minister David Cameron, NHS Scotland said.
Following established protocol, the patient “will be transferred to the high level isolation unit in the Royal Free hospital, London, as soon as possible. This is where the facilities, staff and systems are in place to ensure the best quality and safest care.”
Access to the unit is restricted to specially trained medical staff. A specially designed tent, with controlled ventilation, will be set up over the patient’s bed.
“Scotland has been preparing for this possibility from the beginning of the outbreak in West Africa and I am confident that we are well prepared,” Sturgeon said in the statement.
“We have the robust procedures in place to identify cases rapidly. Our health service also has the expertise and facilities to ensure that confirmed Ebola cases such as this are contained and isolated effectively minimizing any potential spread of the disease.”
She added, “Scotland’s NHS has proved it is well able to cope with infectious diseases in the past, such as swine flu, and I am confident we will be able to respond effectively again.”