First Dallas nurse with Ebola headed to Maryland

The first Dallas nurse to have contracted Ebola after treating an infected Liberian man was transferred on Thursday from a Dallas hospital to a specialized medical facility in Maryland.

The National Institutes of Health said in a statement that Nina Pham, 26, was being taken from Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital in Dallas to the NIH center in Bethesda, Maryland. The NIH facility has one of four isolation units in the United States.

Texas Health Presbyterian officials said on Wednesday that Ms. Pham was in good condition.

As Ms. Pham left the Dallas hospital in an ambulance about 6 p.m. on Thursday, dozens of nurses cheered and waved signs bearing messages of affection and good wishes. She was taken to Dallas Love Field airport, where she boarded the same executive jet used to fly a co-worker to an Atlanta hospital on Wednesday. The jet took off shortly after 7 p.m.

Ms. Pham will receive care from an NIH staff that specializes in infectious disease and critical care, according to the NIH statement.

A second nurse who tested positive, 29-year-old Amber Joy Vinson, has been transferred to a biohazard infectious disease centre at Emory University Hospital in Atlanta.

Ms. Pham and Ms. Vinson were involved in providing care to Thomas Duncan, a Liberian who died of Ebola last week at Texas Health Presbyterian.

The nurses wore protective gear including face shields, hazardous materials suits and protective footwear as they inserted catheters, drew blood and dealt with his body fluids. Still, the two somehow contracted Ebola.

Federal health officials said on Thursday they still don’t know how the nurses caught the virus from Duncan.

Ms. Pham will be flown to Frederick Municipal Airport in Frederick, Maryland, a small airport about 35 miles (56 kilometres) northwest of the NIH. State police, the city and the county are coordinating to ensure she has a quick trip to the hospital, Frederick City Police Lt. Clark Pennington said on Thursday.

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Printable version | Dec 5, 2021 11:37:03 PM |

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