21/10/2015 15:02 BST | Updated 21/10/2015 15:59 BST

Ebola Nurse, Pauline Cafferkey, Makes 'Significant Improvement' In Royal Free Hospital

A nurse who is being treated for a late complication of the Ebola infection has made "significant improvement" since being admitted to hospital, her doctors said on Wednesday.

Despite this improvement, Pauline Cafferkey, who contracted Ebola while working in West Africa, still has a "long recovery ahead of her" following this "unprecedented" situation, Dr Michael Jacobs of the Royal Free Hospital said.

The 39-year-old, who has been kept in an isolation unit, has been suffering from meningitis caused by the Ebola resurfacing.

pauline cafferkey

Pauline Cafferkey earlier this year

Speaking at a press conference at the hospital, Dr Jacobs said: "I'm very pleased today to have the opportunity to update you about Pauline's condition and explain a little about her current illness.

"The last few days she has made a significant improvement. She is inside the isolation unit... But she's talking freely with the staff, using the iPad, beginning to eat a little.

"I think she has a long recovery ahead of her and will be with us for quite a while still," the Press Association reports.

He described the situation as "unprecedented" and said it was a "completely different" type of Ebola than had been seen by medical staff previously.


Ms Cafferkey was transferred from the Queen Elizabeth University Hospital in Glasgow to an isolation unit at the Royal Free Hospital in London earlier this month.

Last week, doctors said her condition had deteriorated and she was "critically ill".

It emerged Ms Cafferkey visited Mossneuk Primary School in East Kilbride, South Lanarkshire, on Monday last week to thank children for their fund-raising efforts, before she was readmitted to hospital with the complication.

The council said the disease "cannot be spread through ordinary social contact".

Ms Cafferkey was placed in isolation at the hospital for almost a month earlier this year after she was infected with the virus.

The nurse from South Lanarkshire was diagnosed with Ebola in December after returning to Glasgow from Sierra Leone via London.