Rome: A doctor working for a voluntary organisation in Sierra Leone has become the first Italian to contract Ebola, media reported Monday.
The doctor, who had been working at a centre in the African coastal town of Lakka, was in good condition, even though he had started to show symptoms of the virus, ANSA news agency reported citing statement by the NGO Emergency.
Italian Health Minister Beatrice Lorenzin said Monday that everything possible was being done to help the stricken doctor. He will will be treated at Rome`s Spallanzani Institute, which specialises in infectious diseases.
Officials with the NGO said that although proper procedures had been followed at the centre in Sierra Leone, infection was always a possibility.
"No health intervention in an epidemic as serious as Ebola can be considered completely free of risk," the NGO said.
As many as 100 new cases of Ebola are being reported daily in Sierra Leone, Emergency said.
The World Health Organisation (WHO) said earlier this month that some 5,000 people have died following the Ebola outbreak in west Africa and over 13,000 cases of infection have been confirmed.