One of the American missionaries infected with the Ebola virus while working in Liberia who was brought back to the U.S. for further treatment was discharged this week from the hospital where he had been kept in isolation, the mission said, according to Reuters.
Dr. Kent Brantly and Nancy Writebol were brought back from West Africa earlier this month and transported directly to Emory University Hospital in Atlanta. Franklin Graham, president of the mission Samaritan's Purse, said Brantly has recovered.
"Today I join all of our Samaritan's Purse team around the world in giving thanks to God as we celebrate Dr. Kent Brantly's recovery from Ebola and release from the hospital," Graham said in a statement, according to CBS News.
Dr. Kent Brantly and his wife, Amber, are seen in an undated photo provided by Samaritan's Purse. Brantly became the first person infected with Ebola to be brought to the United States from Africa. Samaritan's Purse is now saying that Brantly has recovered and been discharged. The Emory University Hospital will speak about the possible discharge of its Ebola patients Thursday morning. (AP/Samaritan's Purse)
The hospital, however, would not say whether it would be discharging the Ebola patients in its care, both of whom received an experimental drug to treat the virus, or if it already had discharged either of them. Hospital officials said they would provide more details at a news conference later Thursday morning.
Last week, Brantly released a statement from isolation saying that he was "recovering in every way."
"I thank God for the health care team here who is giving me compassionate, world-class care. I am more grateful every day to the Lord for sparing my life and continuing to heal my body. There are still a few hurdles to clear before I can be discharged, but I hold on to the hope of a sweet reunion with my wife, children and family in the near future," the doctor said on August 15.
A woman in protective clothing drove an ambulance after departing Dobbins Air Reserve Base in Marietta., Ga., en route Emory University Hospital in Atlanta Saturday, Aug. 2, 2014. A specially outfitted plane carrying Dr. Kent Brantly from West Africa arrived at a military base in Georgia. Brantly was taken to the Atlanta hospital. (AP/John Bazemore)
The World Health Organization reported that as of August 18, that the Ebola virus has spread to nearly 2,500 patients in several West African countries, resulting in about 1,350 deaths.
The current outbreak of the virus, which is contagious through contact with infected bodily fluids and causes hemorrhagic fever among other symptoms, has a fatality rate of 47 percent, according to WHO.
Watch WSB-TV's report about the discharge plans for Ebola patients:
Update: A source told WSB-TV that Nancy Writebol was already discharged from the hospital this week.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.