Dallas Nurse With Ebola Being Transferred To New Location

Thursday, October 16th 2014, 3:12 pm
By: News 9

The first Dallas nurse to have contracted Ebola after treating an infected Liberian man is scheduled to be moved to a specialized medical facility in Maryland.

Dallas County Judge Clay Jenkins says 26-year-old Nina Pham will be taken Thursday from Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital in Dallas to the National Institutes of Health in Bethesda, Maryland.

At a hearing on Ebola in Washington, Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases at NIH, said that Pham would be admitted Thursday night.

"We will be supplying her with state-of-the-art care in our high-level containment facilities," Fauci said.

The NIH facility has one of four bio containment units in the United States. Texas Health officials said Wednesday that Pham was in good condition and it wasn't immediately clear why she's being moved.

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

Pham and Vinson were involved in providing care to Thomas Eric Duncan, who died of Ebola last week.

Pham's father told CBS Dallas station KTVT-TVthat her family will be going with her and they will travel on separate airplanes.

"She's doing fine. Her spirits are good," he said.

Officials said the two nurses have not been able to identify any specific breaches of protocol that might have led to them getting sick. But Duncan's medical records, provided to The Associated Press by his family, do provide a picture of how they interacted with him in the days between his arrival at the hospital Sept. 28 and his death Oct. 8.

Pham first saw Duncan the evening of Sept. 29, the day after he was taken by ambulance to the emergency room. Her notes indicate that he had arrived in the intensive care unit a couple of hours earlier. He was alert, but complaining of abdominal pain and chills.

The next morning, Pham noted a nurse entered Duncan's room wearing a face shield, double gown and protective footwear. It's not clear if she was referring to herself.

On Oct. 1, Pham wrote in her morning progress note that two nurses entered Duncan's room wearing Tyvek suits, respirators, triple booties, triple gloves and an apron. Her report describes nurses repositioning Duncan and providing emotional support. They later changed Duncan's gown and bed linens, turned and repositioned him and wiped down his arms. They also mopped the floor with bleach and wiped down surfaces. He said he was feeling better and asked to watch an action movie.

Pham was also in Duncan's room Oct. 7, the day before he died. Progress reports note he had loose, watery stool and nurses had difficulty inserting a needle at one point. Pham's notes describe nurses going in and out of Duncan's room wearing protective gear to treat him and to mop the floor with bleach.

She also notes that she and other nurses were ensuring Duncan's "privacy and comfort" and providing emotional support.