Ebola outbreak: Swiss nurse flown back to Geneva after being bitten by child infected with disease

The health worker has been placed in quarantine in Switzerland

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A nurse bitten by a child infected with Ebola in Sierra Leone has been flown to Switzerland to undergo observation.

The Swiss health ministry said it was the first medical transport received by Geneva from the outbreak region, and that the man will be kept in quarantine for three weeks.

The man’s citizenship has not been disclosed, though he is reported to have been working for a Geneva-based international organisation at the time he was bitten.

Authorities said that the nurse was wearing protective gear while working at the hospital in Sierra Leone, and that he was therefore unlikely to have contracted the disease. He did not suffer any visible wound, health officials added.

The case came as experts warned that the world could be dealing with more than a million cases of Ebola by January if efforts to tackle the disease outbreak are not drastically escalated.

There are currently an estimated 5,800 people who have suffered from the deadly illness in West Africa, six months on from the first cases reported to the World Health Organisation.

Despite a huge international response effort, the number of cases is still increasing exponentially, and will hit 21,000 within six weeks according to analysis published today in the New England Journal of Medicine (NEJM).