A Spanish nurse has contracted Ebola – in Spain – while caring for a Spanish Priest who became infected with Ebola in West Africa. The Priest died of Ebola, so let’s pray that his nurse survives.
“A nursing auxiliary in Madrid has tested positive for Ebola after treating a patient in the Spanish capital, according to Spanish newspaper El Pais. The case is believed to be first in which a person contracts Ebola from a source outside of Africa. While the woman has not been identified, El Pais reports that she is 44 years old, married without children, and originally from Galicia, though she has worked for more than 15 years in Carlos III Hospital in Madrid. She has not left Spain or come in contact with the Ebola virus except for her work in treating Manual García Viejo… The newspaper notes that the nurse brought herself to Alcorcón hospital's emergency room after experiencing a fever, and was tested twice for Ebola, both times with positive results. Co-workers tell El Pais they are shocked by the contamination, given that the hospital used "extreme" protection against the disease.”
The Spanish nurse likely became infected with Ebola via airborne transmission. No doubt she had extreme protection against direct contact with the body and body fluids of the Ebola patient, but that is not good enough.
"Being at first skeptical that Ebola virus could be an aerosol-transmissible disease, we are now persuaded by a review of experimental and epidemiologic data that this might be an important feature of disease transmission, particularly in healthcare settings... We believe there is scientific and epidemiologic evidence that Ebola virus has the potential to be transmitted via infectious aerosol particles both near and at a distance from infected patients, which means that healthcare workers should be wearing respirators, not facemasks... We strongly urge the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the World Health Organization (WHO) to seek funds for the purchase and transport of PAPRs [powered air-purifying respirators] to all healthcare workers currently fighting the battle against Ebola throughout Africa – and beyond."
Airborne transmission of Ebola probably accounts for this case and others, such as Dr. Kent Brantly, who also exercised extreme caution -- obviously not enough caution;he did not use a HEPA-filtered full face respirator. Under CDC guidelines healthcare workers are protected against direct contact but not against inhalation or eye exposure to microscopic contaminated droplet nuclei, which cannot be seen and which can travel across a room with air currents, and which can remain infectious for about an hour and a half. The potential for this strain of Ebola is exponential, and we have 300 million unvaccinated sitting ducks - we Americans. Our government has failed in its primary duty -- to defend and protect the American people. I believe our pharmaceutical companies would have developed Ebola vaccines years ago were it not for Big Brother.
Read more about the epidemic at the author's Renew America site.