The Morning Heat’s Wednesday Trending Topics
Second Texas Health Care Worker Tests Positive for Ebola
A second Texas health care worker who provided care for Ebola victim Thomas Eric Duncan has contracted the virus, according to preliminary test results released early Wednesday. The worker reported a fever Tuesday and was immediately isolated at the Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital in Dallas, state health officials said in a statement. Confirmatory testing will be carried out by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta.
“Health officials have interviewed the latest patient to quickly identify any contacts or potential exposures, and those people will be monitored,” the Texas Department of State Health Services said. “The type of monitoring depends on the nature of their interactions and the potential they were exposed to the virus.”
This is the third case diagnosed in the U.S.
The worker was among those who took care of Duncan, who died a week ago after he was diagnosed with Ebola earlier this month. The first Texas Health Presbyterian nurse to become infected, Nina Pham, said in a statement Tuesday that she was “doing well” and grateful for her care. 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.”
Ebola is spread through direct contact with bodily fluids of a sick person or exposure to contaminated objects such as needles. People are not contagious before symptoms such as fever develop.
A local infectious disease expert weighs in on whether US hospitals contain Ebola
Ebola fears continue to grow and many are questioning whether American hospital protocols are enough to contain the virus and prevent an outbreak. Fox 2 spoke to a local infectious disease expert, who weighed in.
“Even with some of the best infection control measures put in place, was there an error or a gap that the virus sneaked through,” said Dr. Eden Wells of the University of Michigan School of Public Health.
That’s the question healthcare professionals are asking after a Dallas nurse contracted Ebola after treating a Liberian national Thomas Eric Duncan. More concerns are being raised as the virus infects and kills more people – including those treated in countries with high medical standards and advanced medical equipment and technology.
Wells says hospitals have to be prepared for the possibility someone will walk in carrying the virus. She says hospitals should consider employing the buddy system for medical workers donning protective gear.
“One of the things we’re worried about most in prevention control is how we put our protective gear on which is called donning and how we take it off,” Wells said, “which is called doffing. So donning and doffing are important critical measures and that’s not easy and it’s not easy when you’re taking care of a critically ill person.”
Wells believes many metro Detroit hospitals are ready to treat those infected if the virus makes its way to Michigan
“I can say that the systems here in Michigan that I worked with, there’s an intensive amount of training that goes into infective control,” Well said. “And support of healthcare workers responding to health threats.”
The Centers for Disease Control is facing heat following the death of Duncan and the infection of Dallas nurse Nina Pham. But Wells believes the organization tasked with preventing an American outbreak is still up for the job and is making the grade.
“I would give them a B+ or A-,” she said.
Wells said that people shouldn’t panic over the Ebola virus, that most healthcare systems know how to handle those infected with Ebola and how to stop it.
Police looking for man suspected in rape of U-M student
Police in Ann Arbor are looking for a man suspected of raping a University of Michigan student. Investigators released a security camera photo of the man they believe is the suspect. The 21-year-old woman told police she was approached by the man Oct. 3 and taken to the 1200 block of South University Avenue around 1:45 a.m. where she was sexually assaulted. The suspect between 21 and 25 years old, 5 foot 7 inches to 5 foot 9 inches with a medium build.
If you have any information, call Ann Arbor police at (734) 794-6939 or TIPS@a2gov.org or call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-SPEAK-UP.
Mumps cases reported in Pinckney School District
Two cases of mumps have popped up within the Pinckney Community School District. One case was discovered at Pathfinder Middle School earlier this month. A diagnosis was also made at Navigator Upper Elementary last week. The principles of both schools sent a letter and additional information home to parents. Pinckney Community School District Superintendent Rick Todd cannot confirm whether the cases are students or staff members due to privacy reasons. He did add that they checked the records of all students and staff members to see if the vaccine had been administered. Students who opted out of the vaccinations are not allowed near the school for 25 days.
Written by LBeasley (Lauren Beasley), Digital Producer of The Morning Heat and Sports Editor of Radio One Detroit
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