MIAMI (CBSMiami) – A professor of infectious diseases at Florida International University College of Medicine has been told she will likely to go to West Africa to aid in the fight against the deadliest Ebola outbreak in history.
Dr. Aileen María Marty has been directed by the World Health Organization to prepare for the mission, reported CBS4 news partner El Nuevo Herald.
Marty is considered one of the world's leading experts on emerging infections. The trip could take her from her Miami Beach home to Sierra Leone. She is getting her pre-deployment physical Tuesday morning, she told the paper.
The Ebola outbreak has killed more than 700 people and infected more than 1,000.
Marty, who arrived from Cuba in 1961 with her parents when she was 4, will join a team of experts from around the world that will soon be deployed by WHO.
Experts believe the outbreak can be stopped, but said it is moving faster than the efforts to control it.
WHO officials said a $100 million program that will deploy medical specialists to the outbreak region will help get a handle on the crisis.
Marty will function as a clinician, treating patients and be used for data analysis.
She told the paper, she's confident that the equipment issued will keep her safe from infection.
Shortly after the 9/11 terrorist attacks in 2001, Marty served as one of the experts advising authorities after several people received letters containing anthrax spores.
Five people were killed and more than a dozen others were infected.
While growing up in Miami, Marty graduated from Our Lady of Lourdes Academy, then attended University of Miami where she studied marine biology followed by medicine.
(©2014 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. CBS4 news partner El Nuevo Herald contributed material for this report.)
for more features.