The first two patients to receive treatment for Ebola on US soil have been discharged from Emory University Hospital. According to their physician, Bruce Ribner, they no longer pose a threat to public health.
One of the patients, a missionary named Nancy Writebol, was released on Tuesday, but the hospital decided to keep that information under wraps for a few days, at her request. She has been reunited with her husband and is now resting at an undisclosed location, reports NPR. The second patient, a doctor named Kent Brantly who was infected in Liberia at the end of July, was released today.
Don't assume that the experimental Ebola drug Zmapp cured them
"After a rigorous course of treatment and testing, the Emory Healthcare team has determined that both patients have recovered from the Ebola virus and can return to their families and community without concern for spreading this infection to others," Ribner said in a statement.
Both Writebol and Brantly received the experimental drug Zmapp during their stay at the hospital, but Emory’s physicians are quick to caution against assuming that the drug cured them from Ebola, reports USA Today. Because we know very little about the drug's effects on humans, arriving at that conclusion isn't possible at this time.
"Today is a miraculous day, I am thrilled to be alive, to be well, and to be reunited with my family," Brantly said during a press conference. "Please, continue to pray for Liberia and the people of West Africa."