Ebola survivor Teresa Romero to seek €300,000 in damages

Nursing assistant suing Madrid health chief for attacking her honor

Teresa Romero was discharged from hospital on November 5 after recovering from Ebola.
Teresa Romero was discharged from hospital on November 5 after recovering from Ebola.PIERRE-PHILIPPE MARCOU (AFP)

Teresa Romero, the nursing assistant who contracted Ebola after caring for an infected patient in Madrid and spent a month battling the disease in hospital, is to seek €300,000 in damages, said her lawyer.

Romero, 44, who was discharged from Carlos III on November 5, will sue Madrid health commissioner Javier Rodríguez for attacking her honor and the regional government for putting down her dog Excalibur as a precautionary measure.

José María Garzón said his client would seek €150,000 in each case.

Romero and her husband Javier Limón, who was also kept in isolation at Carlos III for a prolonged period, will also join a criminal complaint filed by health workers against regional health authorities “over failures in the implementation of safety protocols in Ebola transmission,” according to the lawyer.

Madrid Health Commissioner Javier Rodríguez is the target of a legal claim by Teresa Romero.
Madrid Health Commissioner Javier Rodríguez is the target of a legal claim by Teresa Romero.ULY MARTÍN (EL PAÍS)

The nursing assistant’s claim against regional health official Javier Rodríguez involves statements he made to the effect that she withheld information from doctors in the days prior to her admission to Carlos III, and that she made a mistake donning or removing the protective suit required to treat Ebola patients.

Romero herself said in an early telephone interview with EL PAÍS while at hospital that she thought she remembered touching her face with a glove while she was removing her suit. She has subsequently denied recalling the statement.

The health commissioner apologized following the outcry caused by his public statements, but Romero’s husband Limón rejected the apology and promised legal action to defend his wife’s honor.

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