A heartbreaking but uplifting story from the fight against Ebola - one Nigerian doctor came across a patient identified as having malaria but exhibiting ebola-like symptoms. She quarantined him swiftly and aggressively, treating him courageously. The patient succumbed to the virus, as did this courageous doctor, Ameyo Stella Adadevoh. But the virus was haulted in Nigeria after only 7 deaths, and Nigeria is now ebola-free. Had the virus spread to Lagos, it would surely have gone global, and this catastrophe would be only more devastating. Here's to a remarkable doctor, an efficient Nigerian public health system that stopped a deadly virus from spreading further, and all those that are working on the front lines of this deadly epidemic.
This was a brilliant performance from a much-maligned nation. As one senior United States official said, the last thing anyone in the world ever wants to ever hear are the words “Ebola” and “Lagos” in the same sentence. This conjures up images of apocalyptic urban outbreak in a bustling mega-city of 21 million people, the biggest in Africa and full of the sort of over-crowded slums that could see the virus spread terrifyingly fast. It would have been easier for Adadevoh to discharge her difficult patient or pass him to a bigger hospital. Instead, a strong woman carried out her duties, her steely determination and ultimate self-sacrifice serving as a salutary reminder of shared humanity and the power of public service.