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A Month After His Death, Duncan’s Family Reaches Financial Settlement with Dallas Hospital Where He Died of Ebola

EBOLA_1.jpgMore than a month after Thomas Eric Duncan died of Ebola at Dallas’s Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital, his family has reached a settlement for an undisclosed sum with the hospital, which the family members initially accused of giving Duncan substandard care because he was poor and Black without health insurance.

Duncan’s case was riddled with racial overtones, as he was sent home initially by the staff at the hospital even after he told them he had just come from Liberia. Then after he was admitted he was given an experimental drug, prompting his nephew to accuse the hospital of race-related substandard treatment. During Duncan’s stay, two nurses at the hospital also contracted Ebola, but they have recovered from the virus.

Thus far, Duncan is the only Ebola patient to die on U.S. soil.

In West Africa, thus far more than 5,000 people have died from this recent outbreak of the disease.

In addition to paying the family an undisclosed sum that Weisbrod said would provide for Duncan’s parents and his four children, the hospital also will pay the deceased man’s medical bills and will set up a charitable trust in honor of Duncan to help Ebola victims in West Africa.

The family said during the news conference that they would like to a pursue a book or movie deal to tell Duncan’s story.

“I can never replace Thomas Eric Duncan, but we can make sure that we make this better for everyone else,” said Josephus Weeks, Duncan’s nephew.

The family indicated that they had received a letter of apology from the CEO of Texas Health Resources, Barclay Berdan. And despite statements by Weeks accusing the hospital of racism in its treatment of Duncan, the family said they now don’t believe the case had anything to do with race or insurance coverage.


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