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American aid worker who contracted Ebola doing 'as well as could be expected'

July 29, 2014 at 8:37 AM ET

The husband of an American aid worker infected with Ebola has been communicating with his wife by phone and from outside their bedroom window in West Africa, their Stateside friends say.

Nancy Writebol remains in quarantine in her small home in Liberia. Friends from her North Carolina community have been keeping vigil for her while staying in touch with her husband, David, who has been instructed to keep his distance from his wife.

“He obviously prefers to go over so that he can at least look in and talk to her, and see her even though he can’t touch her,” Bill Bailey, a friend of the couple, told NBC's Stephanie Gosk.

Video: The Centers for Disease Control is closely monitoring what has become the largest Ebola outbreak in history. More than 1,200 cases have been reported in Africa, including two Americans. NBC’s Stephanie Gosk reports.

Writebol, a hygienist, is “about as well as could be expected, maybe a little bit better than yesterday but very, very weak,” Bailey said.

The Writebols are missionaries at the same Ebola treatment center where 33-year-old doctor Kent Brantly also contracted the deadly virus, which has infected more than 1,200 people and killed more than 670 of them. Colleagues at his hospital in Fort Worth, Texas say Brantly's team has not been deterred in their mission.

“They are strong, they are firm in their resolve about their decision to go Liberia and their decision to stay in Liberia,” said Dr. David McRay of John Peter Smith Hospital.

Brantly's wife and two children flew back to the United States just days before the doctor started showing symptoms. Samaritan's Purse, the organization Brantly was working with, says they believe the family left just in time.

“We don't see any danger for the wife and children. They are monitoring themselves in case they were to get a fever," said charity spokesman Ken Isaacs, who told the Associated Press Sunday that Brantly "was stable and in very serious condition."

With two Americans infected overseas, the Center for Disease Control issued an alert to U.S. health care providers to be on the lookout for patients returning from West Africa.


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