A cameraman working for NBC News has been diagnosed with Ebola while reporting on the virus in Liberia, the network confirmed Thursday.
The 33-year-old freelancer, who has not been identified at his family's request, came down with symptoms of the virus on Wednesday and quarantined himself right away, NBC News reported.
He was diagnosed with the virus 12 hours later.
The cameraman was only hired Tuesday to cover the virus alongside chief medical editor and correspondent Dr. Nancy Snyderman, who is reporting on an outbreak of the virus with three other NBC News staff in Monrovia.
He is the fourth American to have been diagnosed with the virus in Liberia after aid workers Dr. Kent Brantly and Nancy Writebol; and Dr. Rick Sacra, who was working at a Liberian hospital. All three survived.
Thomas Eric Duncan, who is from Liberia, was diagnosed with the virus Tuesday in the United States. He is currently isolated at a hospital in Dallas, Tx. He may face charges for lying on an airport questionnaire about coming into contact with an Ebola patient.
NBC News president Deborah Turness released the following note to all staff:
As you know, Dr. Nancy Snyderman and our news team are in Liberia covering the Ebola outbreak. One of the members of their crew is an American freelance cameraman who has worked in Liberia for the past three years and has recently been covering the epidemic for US media outlets. On Tuesday he began working with our team. Today, he tested positive for Ebola.
We are doing everything we can to get him the best care possible. He will be flown back to the United States for treatment at a medical center that is equipped to handle Ebola patients. We are consulting with the CDC, Medicins Sans Frontieres and others. And we are working with Dr. Nancy on the ground in Liberia.
We are also taking all possible measures to protect our employees and the general public. The rest of the crew, including Dr. Nancy, are being closely monitored and show no symptoms or warning signs. However, in an abundance of caution, we will fly them back on a private charter flight and then they will place themselves under quarantine in the United States for 21 days – which is at the most conservative end of the spectrum of medical guidance.
We know you share our concern for our colleagues and we will continue to keep you up to date and informed. Please don't hesitate to reach out to me or David Verdi with any questions.
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