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Bishop Confirms Ebola Patient Released From Australian-funded Clinic.

Foreign Minister Julie Bishop confirmed that the very first Ebola patient, 11-year-old Aminata Bangura, treated at the Australian-funded Ebola clinic, has been discharged cured and healthy. Australia's Ebola Treatment Centre at Hastings Airfield, near Freetown in Sierra Leone, opened in December 2015. To date, the clinic had admitted 37 patients, and 26 patients are already receiving treatment.

Bangura, who had fully recovered from the disease, was collected from the clinic by her surviving family members and her father. Bangura's father could not find words enough to thank the Australian and New Zealand staff who took care of his daughter.

The staff at the treatment centre had set-up a hand print wall for all the survivors of the disease to leave their marks. Bangura's hand was the first print on the wall.

Bishop explained that Bangura's survival was significant in showing that people are needed to be treated early. She said deaths occurred in the region because of the failure of the health systems in the places to treat people immediately. Australia's treatment centre in Sierra Leone provided the kind of support that was lacking in the past. Several of Bangura's family members died due to Ebola, and Bishop understood they were not treated in the treatment centre.

"So it is a milestone that the first patient successfully treated in an Australian-managed treatment clinic has been discharged with a clean bill of health. It is a great moment and we hope that we'll be able to achieve more of it," Bishop toldthe press in Perth.

Bishop had also acknowledged and welcomed the first Australian health worker who has returned to Australia after being deployed in the region. As per national, a state and territory guidelines, the health worker is now being closely monitored to ensure the well-being of the broader Australian public.

"Our best wishes are with the Australian health professionals currently working at the Hastings Airfield clinic," Bishop said in her announcement. With the treatment centre at Sierra Leone, Australia's total contribution to the Ebola response reached $45 million. This includes the $23 million used to manage and staff the Ebola treatment centre in Sierra Leone.

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Publication:International Business Times - US ed.
Geographic Code:6SIER
Date:Jan 7, 2015
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