Part 1 is here.
Part 2 is here.
The W.H.O. investigation and decontamination of the hospital took four days.
On the second day, the day after we raised the alarm, the five remaining patients in the ward were dispositioned. Two ambulatory patients went home under home quarantine. One patient was discovered to actually be an Ebola survivor, and was sent back to her community, her immunity bright as a halo around her.
The final two patients began vomiting and having diarrhea, and were transported to our main ETU.
One patient died at the ETU that night.
On the third day, the swab from the dead body came back positive for Ebola.
That night, the second patient died.
On the fourth day, an ambulance pulled up to the gates our of ETU.
Despite it being my “day off,” I was at the ETU to use their internet and get some e-mail and paperwork done. I happened to be in the triage area, and recognized the ambulance crew. I greeted them.
“Great,” I said. “They’ll be out to—”
“It’s a nurse,” he said quietly.
A few moments later, the back doors of the ambulance were sprayed with chlorine and opened. From my position in the green zone of the triage area, I watched as the nurse who had placed the IV in her sick and dying patient at the hospital, all those days ago, stepped out, terrified, into the blinding heat of the sun.