Several Ebola patients treated in the United States have survived due to swift action and aggressive treatment, but the first person ever diagnosed with the deadly virus on American soil has died after initially being denied treatment.
Thomas Eric Duncan died Wednesday at a Texas hospital, 10 days after he was admitted.
"Mr. Duncan succumbed to an insidious disease, Ebola. He fought courageously in this battle. Our professionals, the doctors and nurses in the unit, as well as the entire Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital Dallas community, are also grieving his passing," hospital spokesman Wendell Watson said in a statement.
Duncan's family is devastated, their pastor told reporters, and the woman he had planned to marry is haunted by "what ifs" about his care.
One question family members have asked repeatedly: Would the outcome have been any different if doctors had admitted Duncan to hospital on September 25, the first time he showed up with a fever and stomach pain?
"What if they had taken him right away? And what if they had been able to treatment him earlier?" Pastor George Mason of Wilshire Baptist Church in Dallas told reporters.
"He got sick and went to the hospital and was turned away, and that's the turning point here," the Rev. Jesse Jackson, a spokesman for the family, tolld the local media.
The internet has been buzzing with opinions and commentary. Some of which, as is quite common with the internet defies all logic, like the following post."We were NOT obligated to treat this man for one reason, HE IS NOT A CITIZEN."