Miguel Pajares, a Spanish priest who contracted the Ebola virus in Liberia, has died of the disease. He was the first European Ebola patient to be flown back to Europe for treatment.
The 75-year-old Roman Catholic priest has died in a Madrid hospital, Spanish authorities confirmed on Tuesday. Pajares, who contracted the Ebola virus in Liberia - one of the hardest hit countries in the current outbreak - was airlifted from Liberia on August 7. He had been working for an NGO in the Liberian capital Monrovia.
Pajares was one of only three people who have been treated with an experimental US serum called ZMapp. Two American missionary workers who fell ill with Ebola while working in Monrovia last month were also given the treatment after returning to the US.
On Monday, US President Barack Obama and the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved a request by Liberia for the experimental drug, made by Californian firm Mapp Biopharmaceutical, to be shipped the West African country.
Liberia's Information Minister Lewis Brown told the Reuters news agency that Liberia will receive just enough of the drug to treat two infected doctors.
Brown said Liberia's Health Ministry had contacted Mapp Biopharmaceutical, and asked the FDA to quickly approve its export.
The doctors had consented in writing to the treatment, the minister told Reuters.
Also on Monday, the World Health Organization (WHO) said 1,013 people had been killed by the Ebola virus worldwide and a further 1,848 had been infected.
Ebola is a type ofhemorrhagic fever that is often fatal. It is highly contagious, but not airborne. The infection is transmitted by direct contact with the blood, body fluids and tissues of infected animals or people.
ng/kms (Reuters, dpa, AFP)