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Zimbabwe: Ebola scare patient to be discharged, suffers from Malaria

Doctors plan to discharge a patient who caused an Ebola scare, saying she was only suffering from Malaria.

A worker in a Personal Protection Equipment suit (PPE) uses a stick to move garbage inside the high-risk quarantined zone of the John Fitzgerald Kennedy hospital in the Liberian capital Monrovia on 5 September,2014. Picture: AFP.

ZIMBABWE - Doctors in Zimbabwe say they plan to discharge a patient who caused a major Ebola scare.

They are now convinced she was only suffering from Malaria.

The Harare Hospital, where she was quarantined on Thursday, was shut down for three days.

It's now emerged that blood samples from this patient weren't sent to South Africa for testing, as earlier reported.

Instead, local health authorities only treated her for Malaria and now the patient, an unnamed student from Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) is due to be discharged.

She had been admitted to Wilkins Infectious Diseases Hospital on Thursday after she fell ill on the last day of a three-week long Ebola surveillance period.

All travellers to Zimbabwe from Ebola hit countries are put under surveillance for 21 days.

The official Sunday mail says Zimbabwean doctors confirmed she has responded well to Malaria treatment and doctors at the hospital now want to send her home.

The haemorrhagic fever has claimed the lives of more than 4,000 people in Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone.

Earlier today International Monetary Fund (IMF) Chief Christine Lagarde said that by default or design, Ebola has now become an economic embargo.

She said the urgency now is to stop the spread of Ebola but warned that businesses have to continue and jobs must be created.

"We cannot cure people, we cannot finance hospitals because we cannot send doctors, which is what is most needed. But it's for others to do that and I am delighted that the World Bank is doing its fair bit as well. We are in the business of providing financial support to states in need."

Lagarde pleaded with people to remember that the virus is relatively isolated to three countries and not the whole of Africa.

She also called on the world to adopt the slogan 'isolate Ebola, not countries'.

Meanwhile, United Nations (UN) special envoy on Ebola, David Nabarro, has said he hopes the outbreak can be brought under control within three months.

Nabarro said people are becoming more aware that isolating those infected is the best way to prevent the transmission of Ebola.

The UN special envoy said the number of new cases is quite frightening, as the spread of the disease is currently accelerating.

He believes there is now much better community involvement, leading him to project that getting it under control within the next three months is a reasonable target.

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