Thomas Eric Duncan, by last evening is the name that will forever have a special place in the annuals of United States medical history as the man unmasked and identified as the carrier of the first case of the Ebola virus reigning havoc and paralyzing three West African nation, namely Guinea, Sierra Leone, and Liberia.
Mr Duncan is identified as a Liberian national who is visiting the United States and arrived on September 20, 2014 to visit his sister in Texas but checked into the Texas Presbyterian Health Hospital on September 24, 2014, four days after falling sick.
Details coming from the Dallas Presbyterian Health Hospital confirmed that the patient told the Nurse who attended to him that he just came from Liberia but that health worker did not pass on that delicate piece of information to the doctors and management of the hospital and Mr Duncan was treated and released. But two days later, Mr Duncan on September 26, 2014, called for ambulance as he was critically sick and was again rushed to the Presbyterian Health Hospital where after his blood check few day later, the test confirmed him with the Ebola virus.
As more information continue to come out, family sources have told the health authorities of the United States that Mr Duncan working with a shipping company in Liberia and came in contact with an Ebola victim recently in Liberia, his landlord’s daughter who was dying from Ebola and helped her brother transported her to hospital in a taxis but the hospital refused her by because the hospital was already overwhelmed with patients and returned home with the Ebola patient where she later died. The victim brother who and Mr Duncan transported her to hospital also died few days later from the Ebola virus as well.
The health authorities and the Governor Rick Perry have assured the residents of the state that Mr Duncan’s diagnosis of the Ebola virus poses no inherent health risk and danger to the country as his case is an isolated one and the Texas and the United States have s advanced health system that will disrupt any means of the virus spreading. Governor Perry also disclosed that Mr Duncan came in contact with five school children from five different schools and that have been contacted and tested and are being monitored for twenty-one days.
Mr Duncan is the second Liberian to export the Ebola virus outside the borders of Liberia, the hot bed of the world’s deadliest Ebola outbreak which the World Health Organization has characterized as “an international health emergency crisis”. The first international carrier was a Mr Patrick Sawyer, a Liberia-American and a Liberian public official who traveled to Nigeria to represent the Liberian government though he suspected he might have had the Ebola virus knowing that he attended to his sister who also came in contact with the Ebola virus as he attended to his sister, a health worker who was dying from the Ebola virus few weeks earlier.
Unfortunately, Mr Sawyer died in Nigeria and some of the Nigerian health workers who attended him also died from the Ebola virus and Nigeria consequently became the third West African country the Ebola virus has hit.
But unlike Liberia where the government refused to acknowledge and put in place serious early mechanisms to prevent the virus from spreading, the Nigerian authorities have to date successfully curbed the virus from spreading in the country.