Spanish priest Miguel Pajares, 75, the first European infected by a strain of Ebola that has killed more than 1,000 people in West Africa, has died in hospital in Madrid, a spokeswoman for the city’s health authorities said on Tuesday.
The spokeswoman declined to say when Pajares, who was airlifted from Liberia on August 7 after contracting the disease while working for a non-governmental organization in the African country, had died.
The priest was being treated in the Carlos III hospital, where he had been in quarantine since his return from Africa.
The Health Ministry said he was being treated with the experimental drug ZMapp, manufactured by U.S. company Mapp Biopharmaceutical. Two U.S. aid workers infected by the disease have shown some signs of improvements since being given the drug.
Pajares was repatriated with co-worker Juliana Bohi, a nun who has tested negative for Ebola.
The Ebola drug given to two Americans and the Spanish priest has been sent to treat infected doctors in two West African countries, and the supply of the medicine is now gone, its manufacturer said.
Countries including Nigeria and Liberia had requested the drug, called ZMapp. Mapp Biopharmaceutical Inc., based in San Diego, said it has complied with every request for the drug that was authorized by legal and regulatory authorities. The drug was provided at no cost, according to Mapp.
“It is our understanding that all patients offered treatment, treated, or expected to be treated were or are highly capable of providing informed consent for the use of an experimental drug not yet evaluated for safety in animals or people,” the company said yesterday in a statement.