Latest information says Dr. Richard A. Sacra, the third American to contract the deadly Ebola virusrampaging through Africa, is on his way to the United States.
This was made public by the wife of the American patient, Debbie Sacra, at a news conference at the University of Massachusetts Medical School.
Mrs Sacra informed that she had just spoken to the doctor treating her husband, who had put him on the plane to the US.
“He said Rick is clearly sick, but he was in very good spirits … and he walked onto the plane,” she said. “We are really encouraged by that news and looking forward to reuniting with him,” she said.
Dr. Sacra attending to patients in Liberia.
Mrs. Sacra added that the couple had known there was a risk of him getting infected with Ebola when he left for Liberia in August.
“I knew he needed to be with the Liberian people,” she said. “He was so concerned about the children that were going to die from malaria without hospitalization and the women who had no place to go to deliver their babies by cesarean section. He’s not someone who can stand back if there’s a need he can take care of,”the wife said.
The missionary organization that Sacra works for, SIM, announced on Thursday, 4 September that Sacra was being flown to The Nebraska Medical Center in Omaha for treatment.
University of Nebraska Medical Center Chancellor Jeffrey P. Gold said he hoped Sacra would arrive Friday morning. Sacra will be treated in the center’s biocontainment unit, where he will receive “world-class care,” Gold said.
It was added that Dr. Sacra will be treated in the hospital’s 10-bed special isolation unit, the largest of four such units in the U.S.
Dr. Phil Smith, medical director of the Omaha unit, said Sacra’s transfer to Omaha posed no threat to the public, noting Ebola is transmitted through close contact with an infected person.
Dr. Richard A. Sacra is a Massachusetts physician who has devoted his career to medical missionary work in Liberia and who returned to the west African country after other medical workers fell ill with Ebola.
It was gathered that Dr. Sacra, 51, a family doctor who trained and worked in Worcester but spent most of the past 20 years in Liberia, was not treating Ebola patients but working in an obstetrics ward at a hospital in Monrovia when he became ill.
He developed a fever Friday and isolated himself; tests confirmed Ebola on Monday, according to a statement from his family.
Dr. Sacra was being cared for at ELWA (which stands for Eternal Love Winning Africa) Hospital, which is run by the Christian missionary group SIM.