Yesterday Alain, an anthropologist from the World Health Organisation [WHO] came to our compound. I asked him what he thought of the isolation unit. He was very positive about it, especially about the fact that it is quite open so it is possible to see what is going on inside.
The only bad thing he mentioned was the rather untamed grass growing in-between the buildings. I had thought that this greenery was rather nice and soothing for the patients. But according to Alain, we need to put more of a stamp on the area to show that we are in control of the environment. So today I organised a bit of a tidy up and now the whole area has received a rather haphazard haircut.
Meanwhile the contact tracing teams have been out checking the last remaining contacts. The chains of possible infection have been getting fewer and fewer as one family after another passes through the twenty-one days with no illness (the incubation period for Ebola can be up to three weeks). Now we are down to four main chains.
At the moment the team are having problems with the family of our current patient – they are refusing to have their temperatures taken. They are all smiles and say that they are healthy, but when the thermometer is produced the atmosphere changes.
In the evening meeting, Armand, our specialised doctor, said that our current patient might be our last one. It could all be over!