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Posted by on Oct 15, 2014 in Featured, Health | 16 comments

Second Texas health care worker tests positive for Ebola

A second health care worker who cared for Ebola victim Thomas Eric Duncan in Texas has tested positive for the virus, according to the Texas Department of State Health Services.

The preliminary Ebola test was run late Tuesday at the state public health laboratory in Austin, and results were received at about midnight.


The CDC described the latest case involving a health care worker as a “serious concern.” In a statement, it added: “As we have said before, because of our ongoing investigation, it is not unexpected that there would be additional exposures.”

And from ABC:

“While this is troubling news for the patient, the patient’s family and colleagues and the greater Dallas community, the CDC and the Texas Department of State Health Services remain confident that wider spread in the community can be prevented with proper public health measures including ongoing contact tracing, health monitoring among those known to have been in contact with the index patient and immediate isolations if symptoms develop,” the CDC said in a statement.

A report from the LA Times claims that Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital had a “confused and chaotic response” to Duncan’s arrival in ER.

The nurses’ statement alleged that when Duncan was brought to Texas Health Presbyterian by ambulance with Ebola-like symptoms, he was “left for several hours, not in isolation, in an area” where up to seven other patients were. “Subsequently, a nurse supervisor arrived and demanded that he be moved to an isolation unit, yet faced stiff resistance from other hospital authorities,” they alleged.
Duncan’s lab samples were sent through the usual hospital tube system “without being specifically sealed and hand-delivered. The result is that the entire tube system … was potentially contaminated,” they said.

On Sunday, we learned that 26-year-old nurse Nina Pham had tested positive.