Getty Images Reportage for The New York Times
SUAKOKO, LIBERIA - OCTOBER 16, 2014: J. Sam T.G. Siakor, 30, usually a teacher and gospel artist, who currently works as a water sanitation and hygiene supervisor, from Soimay in Bong County, stands for a portrait at the Bong County Ebola Treatment centre on October 15, 2014 in Bong County, Liberia. "I like going over to the patients and interacting with them, giving them hope. When I am home, I feel that I am not doing the right thing. So some of the days I am off, I will come back and say hi to the patients - just to give them that courage that there is still life for them, that they can come out." Only specially trained workers in protective gear can enter the two wards that house people with confirmed or suspected cases of Ebola; others can interact with the patients from outside a fence, several feet away. Mr. Siakor, a university student, teacher and gospel artist, has lost an uncle and an aunt.
The patients arrive, at first fearful of the people in spacesuits whose faces they cannot see. They wait for test results, for the next medical rounds, for symptoms to appear or retreat. They watch for who recovers to sit in the courtyard shade and who does not. They pray. The workers offer medicine, meals, cookies and comfort. They try to make patients smile. Very, very carefully, they start IVs. They spray chlorine, over and over, and they dig graves. They pray.These are the people of one Ebola clinic in rural Liberia. Run by the American charity International Medical Corps, the clinic rose in September out of a tropical forest. It now employs more than 170 workers, a mix of locals and foreigners, some of them volunteers. There are laborers trying to make money for their families, university students helping because Ebola has shut down their schools, and American doctors who, after years of studying outbreaks, are seeing Ebola’s ravages in person for the first time. A mobile laboratory operated by the United States Navy has set up shop at a shuttere