The Scottish nurse who contracted Ebola in Sierra Leone and was transferred to London for treatment, Pauline Cafferkey, has said she is “very happy to be alive”, having been discharged from hospital after making a full recovery from Ebola.
She was the first patient to be diagnosed of the disease on British soil.
Speaking to the BBC in her first broadcast interview, Ms Cafferkey, 39, admitted she had felt like “giving up” as her condition became critical.
She said she was now looking forward to returning to “normal life” and had no current plans to return to West Africa.
Speaking after being discharged from the Royal Free Hospital, in London, Ms Cafferkey, from Cambuslang, in South Lanarkshire, thanked staff who she said had saved her life.
“I am just happy to be alive. I still don’t feel 100%, I feel quite weak, but I’m looking forward to going home,” she added.
Ms Cafferkey was diagnosed with Ebola on 29 December, after returning to Glasgow via London.
Speaking to BBC health correspondent Branwen Jeffreys, she said: “My first few days I was very well – I just couldn’t understand all the fuss.”
However, she said she was “definitely frightened” having witnesses the virus first hand in Sierra Leone.
“Obviously at the back of my mind I had seen what could happen and what could potentially happen to me.”
After three or four days Ms Cafferkey said her condition began to deteriorate, with the hospital announcing she had become critically ill on 4 January.
Asked if there was a point she felt she would not make it, Ms Cafferkey said: “There was a point, which I remember clearly. I do remember saying: ‘That’s it, I’ve had enough’.”
She said she had “no sense of time” in hospital and cannot remember an entire week when the virus took hold.