When the first American Ebola patients arrive back home in the next few days, they probably won't be greeted with banners or TV cameras. Their route from Atlanta's Hartsfield Airport to the Emory University Medical Hospital will be a closely guarded secret to keep them from getting stuck in traffic or alerting the public.
Two humanitarian aid workers, Kent Brantly of Texas and Nancy Whitebol of North Carolina, were stricken by the disease while working in Liberia. They're being flown back in a private jet. It's not clear which of them will be taken to Emory, according to a hospital statement.
Emory has a special isolation unit, one of four in the country, to treat patients with serious infectious diseases. It is physically separated from other patient areas and is run in conjunction with the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta, the hospital said.
From the hospital in Monrovia, to the Liberian airport and then during the 12-hour flight across the Atlantic, the patients will be in special chambers the whole time, according to Andrew Pekosz, associate professor of molecular microbiology and immunology at Johns Hopkins University who has worked on highly-contagious infectious diseases.