(OMAHA, Neb.) — The American journalist with Ebola who arrived at a Nebraska hospital Monday believes that he may have gotten infected when he got splashed while spray-washing a vehicle where someone had died from the disease.
Ashoka Mukpo arrived at the Nebraska Medical Center Monday morning after being flown directly from Liberia.
“He’s strong and his symptoms are not more advanced then when he talked to us before he left which is a relief,” said his father Dr. Mitchell Levy said at a news conference Monday. He said his son has a fever and slight nausea.
“Likely he will go into the next phase where his symptoms will be more severe,” Levy said.
Levy said that his son is “not certain” when he got the disease, but believes that he could have gotten infected by some of the spray back that came when he was using chlorine to disinfect a car.
“It was a vehicle that somebody had died in,” Levy said.
Mukpo, 33, had been hired as a freelance cameraman by the NBC News crew earlier last week before testing positive for the disease on Thursday.
“He was around the [Ebola] clinic. He was filming inside the clinic,” Levy said.
Levy and his wife, Diana Mukpo, arrived in Omaha Sunday night ahead of their son’s arrival Monday morning, and they said that he appears to be in good spirits.
Ashoka Mukpo had spent two years in Liberia working for a local NGO before returning to the United States in May. When he told his parents that he felt compelled to return in September, they tried their best to dissuade him.
“I told him I thought he was crazy,” Levy said at the press conference held at the Nebraska Medical Center.
“And I begged him from a mother’s perspective saying ‘Please don’t go,’” Diana Mukpo said.
Ashoka Mukpo is the second American to be treated at the facility. The Nebraska facility treated Dr. Richard Sacra last month after he also contracted the disease in Liberia.
The Nebraska Medical Center is one of only four biocontainment units throughout the United States. There is another unit at the U.S. Army Medical Research Institute of Infectious Diseases at Fort Detrick, Maryland; one in Missoula, Montana; and a third at Emory University Hospital in Atlanta, which is where Dr. Kent Brantley and nurse Nancy Writebol, the first two Americans to catch the disease, were treated.
Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio
Recent posts in National News