First US Ebola patient dies

A Liberian man who was the first person diagnosed with Ebola outside of West Africa died in a Texas hospital yesterday, as Washington stepped up airport screening against the deadly virus.

Thomas Eric Duncan died in a Dallas hospital 10 days after he was admitted and despite receiving an experimental drug to fight off the illness, which causes vomiting, diarrhea and often fatal bleeding.

“Mr. Duncan succumbed to an insidious disease, Ebola. He fought courageously in this battle,” said a statement from Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital Dallas.

Duncan is believed to have been infected with Ebola before he left Liberia and boarded a plane to visit family in Texas.The however raised global fears, leading to a spike of suspected Ebola cases and forcing governments to consider stronger methods of keeping the virus at bay. The world’s largest outbreak of Ebola has killed more than 3,400 people in Liberia, Guinea, Sierra Leone, Nigeria and Senegal since the beginning of the year.

Hours after Duncan died, the White House announced that stricter airport screenings would be implemented at John F Kennedy International in New York, Washington Dulles International, Chicago O’Hare International, Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International and Newark Liberty International in New Jersey.

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