Chinese medical team stay put in West Africa for Ebola battle
Updated: 2014-08-08 15:20
After 21 days in quarantine it has been confirmed that Cao Guang, a member of a Chinese medical assistance team in Guinea, has not been infected by the Ebola virus which has caused a deadly epidemic in West African countries Guinea, Liberia, Sierra Leone and Nigeria.
Cao, calling fighting Ebola a "war", had touched one Ebola sufferer's eyelids with his bare hands during treatment.
One of the first Chinese medical workers to be exposed to Ebola in West Africa, Cao wrote on his Weibo account that his feelings were complicated, but that he was grateful for the "special experience" of fighting Ebola.
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According to latest World Health Organization statistics, the virus has been blamed for at least 932 deaths, with 1,711 reported cases.
There are 38 Chinese medical workers who are fighting in the forefront against Ebola virus in Western Africa and the teams have no attention at present to evacuate.
The team in Liberia will stay in the country to help in the battle, leader Zhou Yongjun said. "Egypt and the United States have evacuated their medical staff from hospitals in the capital of Liberia [Monrovia], where the epidemic has also broken out," said Zhou, adding that local doctors were also on leave.
Guinea was the first West African country to suffer an outbreak and the first patients infected in the capital Conakry were treated in the China-Guinea Friendship Hospital.
Kong Qingyu, leader of the Chinese medical assistance team in Guinea, said the hospital had received 12 infected patients in the past 20 days and two Chinese medical workers, one of whom is Cao Guang, had touched the patients. Neither was infected.
"Our circumstances are now stable and the clinic is still open for patients. What we have to do now is to overcome difficulties and accomplish our job," Cao said.
Kong said the team had set out an emergency plan to cope the outbreak.
According to People's Daily, the Chinese government has been sending medical assistance to Guinea since June 1968 and the current team is the 23rd, with 19 members from Beijing Anzhen Hospital.