Time magazine annoints medics fighting ebola as 'person of the year'
Time magazine hails medics fighting Ebola as 'person of the year'Time

Time magazine has awarded its famous Person of the Year title to the people fighting the deadly disease Ebola.

The US publication cast its net wide over a disparate group including - but not restricted to - doctors, nurses and an ambulance driver.

Also commended with the award were foreign workers from Doctors Without Borders, Samaritan's Purse and others.

In third place in the list of influential people around the world was Vladimir Putin, the president of Russia.

The announcement comes as efforts continue to contain the spread of Ebola, a fatal haemorrhaging virus.

The danger facing health care staff who fight the disease in Sierra Leone has been starkly illustrated by figures revealing they are 100 times more likely to contract it than the general public.

According to the World Health Organization, 346 health workers have died from Ebola while at work, out of a 622 so far who have contracted it.

Explaining the decision to give Ebola fighters the title, Time editor Nancy Gibbs hailed the 'heart' they showed amid a sluggish response by governments to the crisis and also general panic by populations.

She said: "The rest of the world can sleep at night because a group of men and women are willing to stand and fight. For tireless acts of courage and mercy, for buying the world time to boost its defences, for risking, for persisting, for sacrificing and saving, the Ebola fighters are Time's 2014 Person of the Year."