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Palliative care conundrums in an Ebola treatment centre
  1. Paul Dhillon1,
  2. Sinead McCarthy2,
  3. Michael Gibbs3,
  4. Kyle Sue4
  1. 1Department of Academic Family Medicine, University of Saskatchewan, Regina, Saskatchewan, Canada
  2. 2Save the Children, Cork, Ireland
  3. 3Heart of England Foundation Trust, Birmingham, UK
  4. 4Department of Family Medicine, Memorial University of Newfoundland, St. John's, Newfoundland, Canada
  1. Correspondence to Dr Paul Dhillon, paul.dhillon{at}


We describe the treatment course and last days of a 33-year-old man from Western Africa who died from Ebola-related complications. Specifically, the issues around declaring a patient palliative in a low resource environment while dealing with a largely unknown entity, Ebola viral disease, make this an important discussion-stimulating case. The patient presented as a confirmed Ebola-positive case from a peripheral holding centre and then proceeded to deteriorate under our care. Significant neurological decline was noted and the prognosis was felt to be grim by certain providers. Other providers disagreed and a number of treatment algorithms were started and stopped during the patient's last days. He succumbed to Ebola complications after 17 days under our care.

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