Potentially Ebola-Infected Patients Flee After Armed Men Raid Clinic

As many as 29 potentially Ebola-infected patients fled a quarantine center in Monrovia overnight after it was raided by armed men.

The Guardian reports that George Williams, the head of the Health Workers Association of Liberia, said the clinic housed 29 patients who "were receiving preliminary treatment before being taken to hospital." Rebecca Wesseh, whose report of the attack was confirmed by Williams, said, "They broke down the door and looted the place. The patients have all gone."

It is not clear at this time how many patients are missing.

The AP reports that the raid was led by residents angry that Ebola patients were brought to the holding center in West Point from other parts of Monrovia. From the AP:

West Point residents went on a "looting spree," stealing items from the clinic that were likely infected, said a senior police official, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to brief the press. The residents took mattresses, sheets and blankets that had bloodstains, which could spread the infection.

"All between the houses you could see people fleeing with items looted from the patients," the official said, adding that he now feared "the whole of West Point will be infected."

The AP notes that despite rumors that West Point will be put under quarantine, assistant health minister Nyenswah said, "West Point is not yet quarantined as being reported."

The World Health Organization reports that Ebola has killed 1,145 people in West Africa, including 413 in Liberia.

[image via AP]