First Case of Ebola Virus Disease in the United Kingdom is Reported to WHO

On Dec. 29, 2014, the World Health Organization (WHO) was notified by the National IHR Focal Point for the United Kingdom of a laboratory-confirmed case of Ebola virus disease (EVD). This is the first EVD case to be detected on UK soil.

The case is a female healthcare worker who has returned from volunteering at an Ebola treatment center in Sierra Leone. The patient flew from Freetown to London via Casablanca, Morocco before reaching Glasgow on Dec. 28. The case displayed no symptoms of infectious Ebola throughout the journey, but is believed to have become febrile around the time of arrival to London.

After feeling unwell with fever and myalgia, the case was admitted to the specialist Brownlee Unit for Infectious Diseases on the Gartnavel Hospital campus in Glasgow and placed into strict isolation on the morning of Dec. 29. The patient was transferred for treatment in isolation at the Royal Free hospital in London on Dec. 30. Currently, the patient is in stable condition and remains in isolation.

A range of public health measures are being implemented by UK authorities with special attention to investigate all possible contacts with the patient during the flight to Scotland via Heathrow.

WHO is in close contact with UK authorities and is facilitating information sharing with involved countries, including Morocco. WHO is ready to further assist as needed.

WHO does not recommend any travel or trade restrictions be applied by countries except in cases where individuals have been confirmed or are suspected of being infected with EVD or where individuals have had contact with cases of EVD. Contacts do not include properly-protected healthcare workers and laboratory staff.

Source: WHO