2nd U.S. Ebola patient arrives in Atlanta

(USA TODAY) -- Nancy Writebol, the second American medical missionary stricken with Ebola virus in Liberia, was carried into Emory University Hospital in Atlanta Tuesday on a stretcher after a trans-Atlantic flight aboard a specially outfitted jet..

Her husband, David, who stayed behind in Liberia, said Nancy "shows signs of continued improvement," according to the faith-based organization she worked for in the West Africa nation.

Writebol, 59, arrived at Dobbins Air Reserve Base on the same jet that brought the first American patient, 33-year-old physician Kent Brantly, to the medical center from Liberia on Saturday.

She was taken to the hospital by ambulance in a small caravan that included the FBI, DeKalb County police and Emory University police, said DeKalb public safety director Cedric Alexander.

He said his department was on heightened alert for the escort because there had been "unsubstantiated threats" against the aid worker. However, the trip from the airport to Emory was uneventful, he said.

Unlike Brantly, who was able to walk, with assistance, from the ambulance, Writebol was carried into the hospital on a stretcher.

"For her to be on a stretcher is not an indication of where she is with Ebola, but an indication that she is very, very weak" after an international flight, Johnson said, noting the 26-year difference in age between the two patients.

He quoted David Writebol as saying that his wife was taken to the plane in Liberia on a stretcher, but was able, with assistance to stand and walk aboard.

"Nancy is still very weak, she shows signs of continued improvement," David said, according to Johnson. "She is showing signs of progress and is moving in the right direction."

He said it was a positive sign that she had yogurt before getting on the plane in Liberia.

Brantly, a doctor with Samaritan's Purse, and Writebol, a hygienist with Service in Mission, were infected while working with Ebola patients at a clinic operated by the American faith-based organizations in Liberia.

Both have already received an experimental "cocktail" of antibodies that has been used successfully on monkeys infected with the Ebola virus.

Brantly's wife, Amber, said in a statement on Tuesday that she had seen her husband daiiy and "he continues to improve."

"I am also thrilled to see that Nancy arrived safely in Atlanta today." she added. "Our families are united in our faith in Jesus, and we will walk through this recovery time together."

The World Health Organization said in its most recent update on the disease that the number of reported cases from the latest outbreak has risen to 1,603, with 887 deaths. The week ending Aug. 1 saw 163 new cases and 61 deaths, the health agency said.

As concern mounts over the spread of the virus in West Africa, the World Bank has pledged as much as $200 million in emergency funding to help Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone.

"The international community needs to act fast to contain and stop this Ebola outbreak," said World Bank Group President Jim Yong Kim, who is a medical doctor with experience of treating infectious diseases.

"I believe this new World Bank emergency funding will provide critically needed support for the response to stop the further transmission."

Late Monday, officials at Mount Sinai Hospital in New York admitted a man who had recently been to West Africa and was showing symptoms — high fever and gastrointestinal problems — consistent with Ebola.

However, the New York City Health Department later said "the patient is unlikely to have Ebola. Specimens are being tested for common causes of illness and to definitively exclude Ebola."

In Washington, a summit hosted by the White House with African leaders has been overshadowed by the growing health crisis posed by the Ebola virus.

Contributing: Kim Painter, Donna Leinwand; Associated Press

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