Smiling doctor recovers from Ebola in NYC

In this Oct. 8, 2014, file photo Bellevue Hospital nurse Belkys Fortune, left, and Teressa Celia, Associate Director of Infection Prevention and Control, wear protective suits in an isolation room in the Emergency section of the hospital during a demonstration of procedures for possible Ebola patients in New York. New York health officials are known for holdings drills on handling emergencies, and Ebola is no exception. Bellevue, the country's oldest public hospital, had been preparing for an Ebola patient in earnest since August. Ebola came to New York via Dr. Craig Spencer, who had been treating patients in Guinea. Spencer alerted his aid agency that he had developed a fever, and was transported to Bellevue by specially trained emergency workers cloaked in protective gear. (AP Photo/Richard Drew, File)

NEW YORK (AP) — An emergency room doctor who was the first Ebola patient in the nation’s biggest city has been released from a New York City hospital and thanked the medical workers who treated him.

Dr. Craig Spencer was released from Bellevue Hospital on Tuesday at a joyous news conference where medical team members were cheering and hooting. It happened 19 days after he was diagnosed with the virus.

He says he’s a living example for how medical protocols can work to stop disease from spreading. He also says the public should remain focused on the source of the Ebola outbreak in West Africa.

The physician had been working with Doctors Without Borders.

Mayor Bill de Blasio and his wife both hugged the 33-year-old doctor.

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