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Fort Worth Doctor Infected With Ebola Now In U.S.

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Dr. Kent Brantly

Dr. Kent Brantly

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FORT WORTH, TX (CBSDFW.COM/AP) - An American patient with Ebola virus infection was transferred from an overseas location to a special isolation facility at Emory University Hospital in Atlanta, GA for treatment according to a statement from the facility.

The patient – Dr. Kent Brantly of Fort Worth – was transferred to the facility at approximately 12:30pm Eastern Time. It marks the first time anyone infected with incurable Ebola, considered one of the world’s deadliest diseases, has been brought into the country.

“We thank God that they are alive and now have access to the best care in the world,” said Franklin Graham, president of Samaritan’s Purse.

“We are extremely thankful for the help we have received from the State Department, the CDC, the National Institute of Health, World Health Organization and, of course, Emory Hospital.”

Executives at John Peter Smith Hospital (JPS) in Fort Worth – where Brantly once worked – said they were “delighted and relieved” by news of his return to the United States. In a statement released Saturday, they also said they remain concerned for Brantly, who was treating Ebola patients in Liberia when he contracted the deadly disease.

“We remain deeply concerned for his health, the health of his colleague Nancy Writebol as she awaits her turn to come home, and for all those who do not have the option of leaving Africa to receive the most advanced care,” the statement from JPS went on to say.

Brantly was flown from Liberia in a private jet outfitted with a special, portable tent designed to transport patients with highly infectious diseases. He was transferred from Dobbins Air Force Base in Marietta, GA to Emory University Hospital where he was set to receive care. An ambulance left the base in Marietta, Georgia, shortly after the jet landed and drove the 15 miles or so toward Emory University Hospital.

According to the Atlanta hospital, they have a special isolation unit that was “previously developed to treat patients who are exposed to certain serious infectious diseases.” They said it is “physically separate from other patient areas and has unique equipment and infrastructure that provide an extraordinarily high level of clinical isolation.”

Before going to Liberia to work for the group Samaritan’s Purse, Brantly completed a four-year residency at JPS Hospital in Fort Worth, TX.

Emory University officials in Atlanta said they anticipate that a second American patient with Ebola virus infection – Brantly’s colleague Nancy Writebol – will be transferred to Emory University Hospital the week of Aug. 3.

(©2014 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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