A series of tests from Emory and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) have found Ms. Vinson to be free of virus. The Emory medical team has maintained its comprehensive safety procedures throughout the treatment process and is confident that the discharge of this patient poses no public health threat.
“Emory Healthcare physicians, in collaboration with the CDC, are pleased to report that Amber Vinson is virus free and she can return to her family and community without any public health concern,” says Bruce Ribner, MD, director of the Serious Communicable Disease Unit in Emory University Hospital.
“The Emory Healthcare team is extremely pleased with Ms. Vinson’s recovery, and we were inspired by her courageous attitude and the strong support of her family and health care colleagues in Dallas,” says Ribner.
Ms. Vinson is the fourth patient to be successfully treated for Ebola virus infection at Emory University Hospital and discharged free of virus.
Emory Healthcare’s mission is to heal and to advance knowledge. The team of health care professionals who care for Ebola patients in the Serious Communicable Disease Unit has trained extensively to treat and contain the most dangerous infectious diseases in the world. Emory medical professionals will apply the experience and knowledge they have gained to colleagues treating Ebola virus disease in West Africa and the United States, and to the treatment of other challenging infectious diseases that may emerge in the future.
Emory University Hospital hosted a news conference at 1 p.m. regarding Vinson’s discharge. Please visit the News Center throughout the day for updates.
Updated October 28, 2014 3:34 pm
Statement by Amber Vinson
Transcript of statement by Amber Vinson given at news conference held Oct. 28, 2014, the day she was discharged from Emory University Hospital in Atlanta, Georgia.
I am so grateful to be well, and — first and foremost — I want to thank God.
I sincerely believe that with God all things are possible.
While the skill and dedication of the doctors, nurses and others who have taken care of me have obviously led to my recovery, it has been God’s love that has truly carried my family and me through this difficult time, and has played such an important role in giving me hope and the strength to fight.
I also want to take a moment to publicly thank my dear grandparents; my aunt, and my uncle who have been visiting me here at Emory, supporting me, and making sure I knew my family was there for me throughout my illness.
And to my family, who played such an important role in my recovery by being there every minute, every day, even though you couldn’t be close … I want to express my love and sincere thanks.
While this is a day for celebration and gratitude, I ask that we not lose focus on the thousands of families who continue to labor under the burden of this disease in West Africa.
Thank you to Dr. Kent Brantly and Nancy Writebol, both of whom were successfully treated here at Emory, for your donations of plasma for me and other patients, and thank you for your leadership in helping to educate the public about this difficult but treatable disease.
I want to sincerely thank the professionals who have contributed to my care, here at Emory Healthcare and at Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital – Dallas.
As a nurse, and now as someone who has experienced what it’s like to be cared for through a life-threatening illness, I am so appreciative and grateful for your exceptional skill, warmth, and care.
Finally, my family and I would like to thank the many people whose prayers have helped sustain us. As we head back home to Texas, we are grateful and we respectfully ask for the privacy my family and I need at this time.
Statement by Dr. Bruce Ribner
Transcript of statement by Dr. Bruce Ribner, medical director, Emory University Hospital Serious Communicable Disease Unit, given at a news conference held Oct. 28, 2014, at Emory University Hospital in Atlanta, Georgia.
Good afternoon and thank you for coming today.
As you have already heard, I am Bruce Ribner, and I am the medical director of the Serious Communicable Disease Unit at Emory University Hospital. I lead the team of physicians, nurses, laboratory technologists, chaplains and the host of other people who are so critically important for caring for our patients in our unit.
Today, I am pleased to announce that Amber Vinson is being discharged from Emory University Hospital.
After a rigorous course of treatment and thorough testing, we have determined that Ms. Vinson has recovered from her infection with Ebola virus, and that she can return to her family, to the community and to her life, without any concerns about transmitting this virus to any other individuals.
Speaking on behalf of everyone at Emory University Hospital, we are pleased with Ms. Vinson’s recovery and grateful for our opportunity to apply our training, care and experience in meeting her medical needs.
As fellow members of the health care community, we deeply admire Ms.Vinson’s courage and dedication in caring for patients with serious communicable diseases. Nurses are on the front lines 24 hours a day in treating our patients, and it is their skill, their knowledge, and their passion for healing that makes one of the critical differences in caring for our patients.
Now that Ebola virus transmission has occurred in the United States, we all recognize that there is a lot of anxiety in the community, and that is understandable. But the American health care system has been able to successfully treat patients with Ebola virus disease. We have the resources, we have the expertise and we have the knowledge.
We must not let fear get in the way of our primary mission, which is caring for patients with serious diseases such as Ebola virus infection.
As grateful as we are for Ms. Vinson’s recovery, we do recognize that our role as the American health care system, and our nation’s role, is far from over.
Emory has taken a lead in posting our protocols online as well as participating in webinars, answering myriads of phone calls and emails, and trying to spread knowledge of the management of this disease around the world.
We continue to collaborate with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, with the National Institutes of Health, with the Food and Drug Administration and the many professional organizations which have been involved in fighting this terrible outbreak.
We’d also like to acknowledge the many government officials at all levels — local, state and national — who have assisted us from the time we started to care for our first patient with Ebola virus disease.
We also want to acknowledge and thank our colleagues at Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital. We have been privileged to care for one of the members of their team, and we are delighted that Ms. Vinson will be rejoining her community soon.
Emory University Hospital