By Henni Espinosa, ABS-CBN North America Bureau
Oct. 31, 2014
PALO ALTO, Calif. – The Stanford doctor who is now being monitored for Ebola in the San Francisco Bay Area is being considered a hero by a Pinoy colleague, who says he went where others simply refused to go.
Dr. Julietta Gabiola is all praises for her colleague Dr. Colin Bucks, who just returned from a month-long mission in a jungle camp in Liberia to care for Ebola patients.
The virus has killed nearly 5,000 people.
“Colin was very courageous to go, obviously,” said Dr. Gabiola. “Obviously, when you go to a place like that, there’s inherent risk to go there. But he was confident in terms of his training.”
Bucks, a Stanford emergency physician, is now one-week into a 21-day quarantine since returning from Liberia.
Bucks readily agreed to a mandatory isolation.
“Colin is very giving, very passionate about giving, so he didn’t mind the mandatory isolation,” said Dr. Gabiola, “and he didn’t mind going there and having the inherent risk of getting Ebola virus.”
Risking his own health and well-being to help others is nothing new for Bucks.
Bucks, Gabiola, and other members of the Stanford Emergency Medicine Program for Emergency Response (SEMPRE) were deployed to Leyte last Nov. 22 to treat traumatized and injured kababayans following Typhoon Yolanda.
“We all do mission, and giving is such a wonderful thing. It’s such a fulfilling thing to do,” said Gabiola.
Meantime, the self-isolated Bucks told local media he doesn’t want healthcare workers to be treated like lepers upon their return, and be discouraged to volunteer to fight the Ebola epidemic.
Gabiola says he has all the support of his family, friends, and colleagues, as he continues to help contain the deadly virus.