Second Texas Health Worker Tests Positive For Ebola

Dallas ebola hazmatAP Photo / LM OteroA hazmat worker cleaning outside the apartment building of a hospital worker diagnosed with Ebola. The worker, a nurse, cared for Ebola patient Thomas Eric Duncan, who later died.

A second health care worker at Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital has tested positive for Ebola, the Texas health department said on Wednesday.

The worker, who cared for the first Ebola patient diagnosed in the United States, Thomas Eric Duncan,” reported a fever Tuesday and was immediately isolated at the hospital,” the department said in a statement.

Duncan died at Texas Health Presbyterian last week and the 26-year-old nurse who cared for him, Nina Pham, was diagnosed with Ebola on Sunday.

“Health officials have interviewed the latest patient to quickly identify any contacts or potential exposures, and those people will be monitored. The type of monitoring depends on the nature of their interactions and the potential they were exposed to the virus,” officials added.

The news comes just a day after the National Nurses Union, the largest US organisation of nurses, released a statement criticising the treatment response to Ebola in US hospitals, including the training and protective equipment provided to workers.

“Nurses and other frontline hospital personnel must have the highest level of protective equipment, such as the Hazmat suits Emery University or the CDC themselves use while transporting patients and hands on training and drills for all RNs and other hospital personnel,” RoseAnn DeMoro, executive director at NNU, said in a media release.

The union will host a national call-in conference call on Wednesday at 3 p.m. ET to discuss concerns about hospital readiness in the US.

Meanwhile, the World Health Organisation said on Tuesday that as many as 10,000 people in West Africa could be infected each week if efforts to control Ebola are not stepped up within the next two months.

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