Nurse diagnosed with Ebola after traveling to Cleveland, Akron a - News, Weather, Sports, Toledo, OH

Nurse diagnosed with Ebola after traveling to Cleveland, Akron area seeking treatment in Atlanta

Nurse Amber Vinson (Source: Akron Public Schools) Nurse Amber Vinson (Source: Akron Public Schools)
CLEVELAND, OH (Toledo News Now) - The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says the second nurse who tested positive for Ebola in Dallas, TX flew through Hopkins International on a Frontier Airlines flight on Monday,October 13, 2014. That plane flew to Fort Lauderdale on October 14 and then twice to Atlanta before returning to Cleveland. It was disinfected at Cleveland's Hopkins International Airport before being put back into service Wednesday.

According to officials the nurse, who contracted the virus, cared for Ebola patient Thomas Duncan.

Duncan was diagnosed with Ebola on Sept. 30 after contracting it while visiting Liberia. He died Oct. 8 at Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital in Dallas.

According to CNN, the worker, a woman who lives alone, is in isolation at Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital. Reuters has identified the woman as 29-year-old Amber Vinson. Vinson is being treated at Emory University Hospital in Atlanta, which has successfully treated three other Americans infected with the virus.


READ MORE: Ebola concerns in Ohio

Time spent in Ohio

Wednesday morning, the CDC notified state health officials that Vinson visited family in the Akron area from October 8-13.

The Ohio Department of Health said: 

Ohio has swiftly acted and is working with the CDC and Summit County health officials to identify people who may have been in close contact with the health care worker and implement quarantine as necessary. In addition, Ohio is working with the airline to identify individuals on her return flight to Dallas. 
 
“The Ohio Department of Health has been working since July on its preparedness plan in the event that Ohio ever got positive case in the state, and we're confident in our efforts to respond efficiently and effectively,” said Dr. Mary DiOrio, State Epidemiologist and interim chief of the Ohio Department of Health's Division of Prevention and Health Promotion.

The Ohio Department of Health set up a 24-hour call center to answer questions about Ebola. The number is 1-866-800-1404.

One person has been voluntarily quarantined in Summit County after having contact with the nurse. 

The Centers For Disease Control and Frontier Airlines released the following statement

On the morning of Oct. 14, the second healthcare worker reported to the hospital with a low-grade fever and was isolated. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention confirms that the second healthcare worker who tested positive last night for Ebola traveled by air Oct. 13, the day before she reported symptoms.

Because of the proximity in time between the evening flight and first report of illness the following morning, CDC is reaching out to passengers who flew on Frontier Airlines flight 1143 Cleveland to Dallas/Fort Worth Oct. 13.

CDC is asking all 132 passengers on Frontier Airlines flight 1143 Cleveland to Dallas/Fort Worth on October 13 (the flight route was Cleveland to Dallas Fort Worth and landed at 8:16 p.m. CT) to call 1 800-CDC INFO (1 800 232-4636). After 1 p.m. ET, public health professionals will begin interviewing passengers about the flight, answering their questions, and arranging follow up. Individuals who are determined to be at any potential risk will be actively monitored.

The healthcare worker exhibited no signs or symptoms of illness while on flight 1143, according to the crew. Frontier is working closely with CDC to identify and notify passengers who may have traveled on flight 1143 on Oct. 13.  Passengers who may have traveled on flight 1143 should contact CDC at 1 800-CDC INFO (1 800 232-4636).

Cleveland nurses on Frontier flight

On October 15, Cleveland Clinic, the MetroHealth System and University Hospitals issued the following joint statement:

“Today, we learned that Cleveland Clinic and The MetroHealth System had employees – mostly nurses – aboard the Frontier flight from Dallas to Cleveland on October 10, returning from a nursing conference in Texas. That flight included the Dallas nurse who was diagnosed with Ebola when she returned to Dallas on October 13.

Both health systems have put all of our employees who were on that flight on paid leave while we will monitor their health daily. We are confident that these nurses are at low risk of exposure since we understand that the Dallas nurse did not have symptoms at the time. We have taken this measure as an extra precautionary step for our employees, patients, and visitors.

Cleveland Clinic, The MetroHealth System, and University Hospitals will be working closely together to keep our community safe and to work toward preventing the spread of the Ebola virus.”


Frontier Airlines Statement

“At approximately 1:00 a.m. MT on October 15, Frontier was notified by the CDC that a customer traveling on Frontier Airlines flight 1143 Cleveland to Dallas/Fort Worth on Oct. 13 has since tested positive for the Ebola virus. The flight landed in Dallas/Fort Worth at 8:16 p.m. local and remained overnight at the airport having completed its flying for the day at which point the aircraft received a thorough cleaning per our normal procedures which is consistent with CDC guidelines prior to returning to service the next day. It was also cleaned again in Cleveland last night. Previously the customer had traveled from Dallas Fort Worth to Cleveland on Frontier flight 1142 on October 10.

Customer exhibited no symptoms or sign of illness while on flight 1143, according to the crew. Frontier responded immediately upon notification from the CDC by removing the aircraft from service and is working closely with CDC to identify and contact customers who may traveled on flight 1143.

Customers who may have traveled on either flight should contact CDC at 1 800 CDC-INFO.

The safety and security of our customers and employees is our primary concern. Frontier will continue to work closely with CDC and other governmental agencies to ensure proper protocols and procedures are being followed.”Employees at the Frontier terminal of Hopkins International Airport wore gloves while checking baggage on Wednesday. Workers at other terminals did not. The restrooms and concourse at the airport received an extra cleaning as a precaution. 

While some travelers say they are concerned, everyone was still going about their business.

"It does, it concerns me, especially having a toddler, but you gotta keep living life," said Christina Fitzgerald, who flew into Cleveland. "You just gotta pray about it and keep moving."

Statement from Ohio Gov. John Kasich

“I have been fully briefed on the federal, state and local activities that are underway and have directed state health officials to aggressively respond to the situation and provide local health officials every resource and support they need. Every effort must be taken to identify those at risk, monitor their health and avoid further risk.

“Ohio has a sophisticated state and local public health network that has been preparing for this possibility for several months and those plans are now being activated. The Department of Health's epidemiologists are on-site in Summit County to support local efforts and are in ongoing communication with the CDC to make sure we have the most up-to-date information.

“The risk to people who have had no direct contact with the nurse remains very low, but everyone is seeking to apply the lessons from Dallas and we are responding aggressively to this situation, with a priority on public communication that is open, timely and accurate. We will continue to provide as much information as soon as possible and provide local health care providers the resources they need to keep Ohioans safe.”

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