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Madrid hospital nurse infected with Ebola, Health officials

Madrid, Oct 7 (): Health minister of Spain said on Monday that a Spanish nurse has become the first health worker to be infected with the Ebola virus outside West Africa.

It is said the nurse is the first one in the recent outbreak identified to have contracted Ebola outside Africa. The nurse had treated two victims of Ebola in Madrid. Some 3,400 people have died in the outbreak – mostly in West Africa.

The nurse was one among the medical squad that looked after a 69-year-old Spanish priest who died on September 25 in a hospital in Madrid designated for giving treatment to Ebola patients. The priest was flown from Sierra Leone to Spain. In Sierra Leone, the priest served as the hospital’s medical director and was treating the infected Ebola patients there, Health Minister Ana Mato said.

Previously, another Spanish priest of age 75, Miguel Pajares, got infected in Liberia with Ebola and he too was flown to Madrid to get special treatment. In spite of it, the priest died on August 12 at the hospital.

Both the priests were the members of Hospital Order of San Juan de Dios, a Roman Catholic group that runs a charity working with Ebola victims in Africa.

The Spanish nurse was on Monday morning admitted to hospital with high fever. The nurse has tested positive for the virus. A spokesperson for the department of health of the regional government of Madrid told that two tests were made for Ebola infection and both of them were positive.

Spanish medical-worker officials have expressed fear over the instance, saying that it had raised queries over the competence of the medical procedures of the country for treating the patients infected with Ebola and preventing spread of disease in Spain and elsewhere. The female nurse was infected when she was working at Carlos III hospital in Madrid, which had specially been prepared to give treatment for the disease.