Dr Martin Salia, who contracted Ebola in Sierra Leone and was being treated at a Nebraska hospital, has died, a hospital spokesman confirmed today, Monday November 17th 2014.
“It is with an extremely heavy heart that we share this news,” Dr. Phil Smith, medical director of the biocontainment unit at Omaha’s Nebraska Medical Center, said in a statement. “Dr. Salia was extremely critical when he arrived here, and unfortunately, despite our best efforts, we weren’t able to save him.”
Salia was a member of the Church of the United Bretheren in Christ and was working as a surgeon at Kissy United Methodist Hospital in Freetown, Sierra Leone. He was a citizen of Sierra Leone and has family in the U.S., according to a church spokesman.
In a statement, the Nebraska hospital said Salia’s Ebola symptoms were very advanced by the time he arrived there on Saturday and that he was already in kidney and respiratory failure. His treatment included dialysis, blood plasma from Ebola survivors and the anti-Ebola drug ZMapp, the hospital said.
“We used every possible treatment available,” Smith said in the statement.
Salia’s wife, Isatu Salia, said in the statement that she was “very grateful” for the hospital’s efforts.
The doctor was the 10th patient in the U.S. to receive treatment for Ebola. The Nebraska Medical Center contains a specialized biocontainment unit and had successfully treated two other patients with Ebola.
Salia’s wife, an American citizen who lives in Maryland, had told the official news service of the Methodist Church that she was paying $200,000 to have her husband flown to the U.S. for care, and that she was trying to raise more to travel to Nebraska with the couple’s two sons, who are 12 and 20 years old.