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Ebola Kills Doctor Who Treated ‘More Than 100’ Patients and Led the Battle Against the Disease in Sierra Leone

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By jaskiran kaur | July 31, 2014 12:09 PM EST

The current outbreak of Ebola has taken the life of a prominent doctor in Sierra Leone, who led the battle against the disease. The spread of the contagious disease left Sheik Umar Khan infected and took his life only few days after the death of another leading African doctor helping to cure the disease in the country hit badly by the virus.  

The death of Sheik Umar Khan has led to a great loss as the medical practitioner is credited for greatly contributing to the cause. According to Time, the doctor is known for "treating more than 100" people infected by the deadliest Ebola virus.

"Khan's death is yet another recognition that health workers is the group most at risk," Tarik Jasarevic told TIME. Tarik is a spokesperson with World Health Organisation (WHO).

"This is the first time most of these workers face such an outbreak."Tarik continued. 

The WHO worker suggests that these medical practitioners must be provided with "protective gear" and training "on how to use it."

"We also need to make sure there are enough workers. If they work reasonable shifts they can focus not only on the patients, but also on themselves," Tarik Jasarevic told the publication.  

The report notes that Sheik Umar Khan died only few days after "three nurses," who were assisting him in Sierra Leone to treat the people, lost their life. It is also reported that the spread of the virus has infected "more than 100 health workers since the beginning." And approximately "half of them" were killed by it.

"There is a risk the epidemic will spread..." warns Tarik. He informs that they are aware of the steps that need to be taken "to stop it on the ground" but that "requires a lot of resources."

According to Tarik the need of the hour is "more treatment centres and experts on the ground." Communication with "communities and families to bring their victims to the centres as quickly as possible" is another step towards increasing "the chance of survival," according to Tarik.  

"Surveillance systems, safe transports for victims and equipment to carry out burials in a safe way" are some other measures suggested by Tarik while speaking to TIME.

Ebola has taken lives of around 670 people and is said to be the worst "Ebola outbreak in history."

Guardian notes that Health Ministry has honoured the 39-year-old Sheik Umar Khan as a "national hero" for his work towards the cause. He lost his life on Tuesday afternoon, after he was reportedly shifted to a treatment centre by Médecins Sans Frontières located in the "far north of Sierra Leone." The report notes that the day Umar Khan passed away, President Ernest Bai Koroma was going to visit his medical centre.

Daily Mail reports that two more doctors have succumbed to Ebola virus becoming the first Americans to be infected and diagnosed with the disease. American doctors Kent Brantley and Nancy Writebol were working for charity in Liberia. It is reported these doctors are "entering a 'critical' phase of their treatment" and "next few days" will reveal if they are going to survive or not.  

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