DALLAS (AP) - Although health officials are dismayed to learn that a second worker at a Dallas hospital contracted Ebola after treating a patient there, the second case could help health officials determine how the workers are becoming infected. And they could use the information to make practices safer for health workers everywhere.
For example, if both health workers were involved in drawing blood from Thomas Duncan, or placing an intravenous line, or suctioning mucus when he was on a breathing machine, that would be recognized as a particularly high-risk activity.
It might also reveal which body fluids pose the greatest risk of transmitting Ebola.
Before the second case emerged, there were suspicions that the lapse may have involved how a nurse put on and removed the protective garb.
Both nurses have been hospitalized at the same hospital where they work. The second nurse will be taken to Emory University Hospital in Atlanta.