Airborne? Nurse infected in Spain was said to have been ‘wearing protective clothing’, ‘following protocol’


3 more quarantined in Spain, 50 monitored

By Shepard Ambellas |
La Paz Hospital, Madrid (Photo Credit: Rubén Vique/Flickr)
La Paz Hospital, Madrid (Photo Credit: Rubén Vique/Flickr)

MADRID — While Spanish Health Minister Ana Mato told the country to remain calm, confusion took place behind the scenes at La Paz Hospital, as medical staff reportedly followed protocol and are not sure how the nurse contracted ebola after treating the 75-year-old priest who recently died from infection.

The nurse, 40, who which is currently infected with the Ebola virus is reported to be stabilizing at this time as her friends, co-workers and family hope for the best. However, the Ebola virus, which has killed over 3,400 people in recent months, is vigilant and the condition of the infected can rapidly change within minutes.

All of this has official scratching their heads. In fact, Scott Newman reporting for NPR wrote:

“We know she entered the infected priest’s room twice — once to treat him and once after he died to collect some of his things,” said Dr. Antonio Alemany, a health officials from the regional government of Madrid. “As far as we know, she was wearing a protective suit the whole time and didn’t have any accidental contact with him.”

This is extremely disturbing to the medical community, because if protocol was indeed followed it’s possible that the virus has mutated and possibly gone airborne. The case is currently under investigation.

“Dr. William Schaffner, an infectious disease expert at Vanderbilt University, said her case shows that health workers can be at risk not only in West Africa but in the sophisticated medical centers in Europe and the United States.”, ABC News reported.

As of Tuesday morning, the infected nurse’s husband and two others have been quarantined after exhibiting Ebola-like symptoms. At least 50 others are being closely monitored by authorities, reports say. Although the full extent of the outbreak may not yet be known.

Furthermore, the infected nurse was said to have taken a one week vacation after treating the 75-year-old infected priest who died from Ebola. However, her itinerary showing where she traveled, has not yet been officially released.

While it’s important to note that the European Union has advanced warning and detection equipment put into place, EU officials still want to know more details surrounding the case and has made formal requests, according to reports.

Back in the U.S.

All of this has the Obama Administration on alert back in the U.S. as they are considering a ramp-up on passenger screening at four major U.S. airports. This additional passenger screening will take place at JFK International Airport (JFK), Newark Liberty International Airport (EWR), Washington Dulles (IAD), and Chicago O’Hare (ORD) and will apply to passengers traveling from the “hot zone”, West Africa, into the U.S..

NBC News reports:

The administration says it does not support blocking flights from West Africa, in part because affected countries screen travelers on the way out. Dr. Thomas Frieden, director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, says 77 people have been pulled out of lines to board flights from affected countries thanks to screening. The World Health Organization says blocking flights would only worsen the problem by making countries poorer and by discouraging aid workers from coming to help. But it’s possible to add screening at U.S. airports. “We’re also going to be working on protocols to do additional, faster screening both at the source and here in the United States,” President Barack Obama said Monday.

Other Sources:

Ebola in Spain Raises Questions About Protection — ABC News

Spain Struggles to Address Concern Over Ebola Case — Wall Street Journal

Get more Ebola News here

About the author:

shepard bio photoShepard Ambellas is the founder, editor-in-chief of Intellihub News and the maker of SHADE the Motion Picture. You can also find him on Twitter and Facebook. Shepard also appears on the Travel Channel series America Declassified. You can also listen to him on Coast To Coast AM.

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The Shepard Ambellas Show is an all original fast-paced comedy, variety, news show where nearly everything goes. Shepard Ambellas is the founder and editor-in-chief of the popular independent news website (news and politics). Bethany Adoni sits shotgun. The Shepard Ambellas Show airs LIVE weekdays (Mon-Fri) on the Shepard Ambellas YouTube channel from 5-7 pm Eastern/4C/2P. Subscribe now! Turn notifications on immediately. The show is nationally syndicated on iHeart Radio. An archived version of the show is also available on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Google Podcasts, Castbox, Deezer, Podcast Addict, Podchaser, JioSaavn, and Spreaker for you listening pleasure.