UPDATE: US doctor infected with Ebola in stable condition

By: Associated Press Email
By: Associated Press Email

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OMAHA, Neb. -- Officials at the Nebraska Medical Center say a doctor who became infected with Ebola while working in Liberia is communicating with caregivers as they decide on a course of treatment.

Officials say 51-year-old Dr. Rick Sacra is sick, but in stable condition. He's the third American aid worker sickened with the virus. The other two have recovered.

Sacra is being treated at a 10-bed special isolation unit built to handle patients with highly infectious and deadly diseases.

Sacra delivered babies at the Liberian hospital and was not involved in the treatment of Ebola patients, so it's unclear how he became infected with the virus that has killed an estimated 2,100 people during the outbreak.

The medical team is discussing experimental treatments, including using blood serum from a recovered patient. About a half-dozen drugs or vaccines are in development.

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A North Carolina-based charity says the missionary who was infected with Ebola while serving in Liberia is being flown to a Nebraska hospital for treatment.

A statement from SIM on Thursday says Dr. Rick Sacra is being flown to The Nebraska Medical Center in Omaha. He is expected to arrive on Friday and begin treatment in the hospital's Biocontainment Patient Care Unit.

SIM president Bruce Johnson says Sacra was receiving excellent care from staff at a care center in Liberia, but he says the Nebraska facility provides advanced monitoring equipment and a wider availability of treatment options.

Sacra, a doctor from the Boston area, opted to head to Liberia after hearing that two other missionaries were sick. He was infected by the virus that has killed about 1,900 people.

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