MY TWO CENTS WORTH…
I am so happy for this nurse that stepped in to care for another human being with an uncertain and definitely frightening diagnosis in the face of an inadequate system?? What are her job prospects now? Should she be penalized for a systemic failure, for stepping in when most wouldn’t? And why, oh why, oh why are we identifying these people? HIPPA!!
Why is she being referred to as Name…The Ebola Nurse and the patient who passed, identified by name as “The Ebola patient?” We are taught in nursing school not to refer to people as “the kidney patient” “the DKA” etc, instead as “Mr or Mrs So and So”. These are sons and daughters, aunts and uncles, neighbors and coworkers…with hopes, dreams, faubles like all of the rest of us. They shop at the grocery store, buy gifts, wear goofy clothes, like the rest of us. They deserve respect and admiration! This professional nurse deserves the same respect, as does the unfortunate man who passed.
Nurse, now Ebola free, receives thanks from Obama
Nina Pham got a hug from President Barack Obama in the Oval Office at the White House. And outside the hospital where she had been since last week, she got hugs from the nation’s infectious disease chief, who oversaw her care.
White House spokesman Josh Earnest called the meeting with Obama “an opportunity for the president to thank her for her service.” But the close contact between the president and the former patient also came as officials in New York tried to calm fears after a doctor was diagnosed with Ebola in that city.
Pham said she felt “fortunate and blessed to be standing here today,” as she left the National Institutes of Health’s Clinical Center in Bethesda, Maryland, where she had been since she arrived Oct. 16 from Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital Dallas.
Pham thanked her health care teams in Dallas and at the NIH and singled out fellow Ebola survivor Dr. Kent Brantly, who recovered after becoming infected in Liberia, for donating plasma containing Ebola-fighting antibodies as part of her care.
“Although I no longer have Ebola, I know it may be a while before I have my strength back,” Pham said at a news conference.
Dr. Anthony Fauci,, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, told reporters that five consecutive tests showed no virus left in her blood. Five tests is way beyond the norm, he stressed, but his team did extra testing because the NIH is a research hospital. He had walked out to the news conference with his arm around Pham and later gave her a big hug.
“She is cured of Ebola, let’s get that clear,” Fauci said.
Pham stood throughout the approximately 20-minute press conference and was joined by her mother and sister. She read from a prepared statement and took no questions, but she called her experience “very stressful and challenging for me and for my family.”
“I ask for my privacy and for my family’s privacy to be respected as I return to Texas and try to get back to a normal life and reunite with my dog Bentley,” she said, drawing laughter with the mention of her 1-year-old King Charles spaniel. Bentley has been in quarantine since Pham’s diagnosis but has tested negative for the virus.
Pham is one of two nurses in Dallas who became infected with Ebola while treating Thomas Eric Duncan, who traveled to the United States from Liberia and died of the virus Oct. 8. The second nurse, Amber Vinson, is being treated at Emory University Hospital in Atlanta, which on Friday issued a statement saying she “is making good progress” and that tests no longer detect virus in her blood.
Associated Press writers Lauran Neergaard and Jim Kuhnhenn in Washington contributed to this report.