Dallas, We Have A Problem. Or Maybe It’s Just an Anomoly?

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Later today the CDC will advise whether Patient #1 does indeed have Ebola. In case you missed it, a nurse using full protective equipment while treating Patient Zero aka as Mr. Duncan that died last week, tested positive for Ebola based upon a test performed in Austin. The CDC will do a test in Atlanta to confirm or refute the results.

She was self-monitoring herself and upon getting a fever Friday night, admitted herself to the Texas Presbyterian Hospital where she worked to save Mr. Duncan. Luckily, it only took a total of 90 minutes from the time she discovered she had a fever to being admitted into the hospital. Decontamination crews already had cleaned her car, the parking lot and rails, etc. along her path before daybreak. They will clean her apartment later today.

The CDC Director, Dr. Freidan, held another press conference and appeared on a couple of Sunday shows. He was adamant that a “breach in protocol” was the cause for her catching the virus. Yet in the same presser, he said that he didn’t know how many healthcare workers were in the low-risk pool of which this nurse was among. Not very comforting if you ask me (my emphasis below).

The worker, Friedan said, dealt with Duncan “on multiple occasions after his diagnosis.”

“Clearly there was a breach in protocol. We have the ability to prevent the spread of Ebola by caring safely for patients,” he told CBS host Bob Schieffer in an interview airing later this morning. “We know from many years of experience that it’s possible to care for patients with Ebola safely without risk to healthcare workers but we also know that it’s hard and that even a single breach can result in contamination.”

Taking off contaminated gear can be tricky, he noted. Investigators will look closely at Duncan’s treatment, including dialysis and intubation. “These are two procedures which can result in the spread of infectious material,” he said.

Frieden had no detail on how many health care workers are being monitored now.

“Our team is intensively working with the hospital on both understanding what happened and to find other healthcare workers who may be at risk and also making sure that protocols are followed in the care of this individual,” he said.

We should be able to trust the CDC but even Bob Schieffer on Face the Nation didn’t quite seem to when he asked why they were …read more    

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