(BETHESDA, Md.) — The condition of nurse Nina Pham, who has become known as Ebola nurse No. 1, has been changed from “good” to “fair, stable” after being transferred to a specialized hospital in Maryland.
But her doctors denied that her health has deteriorated and one doctor was more upbeat saying she’s “doing quite well.”
Pham, 26, and Amber Vinson, 29, are both nurses who have contracted the lethal virus after helping to care for Thomas Duncan, a Liberian man who died of Ebola in a Dallas hospital.
Vinson has been transferred to Emory University Hospital in Atlanta and Pham arrived Thursday night at the National Institutes for Health facility in Maryland.
Pham was listed in good condition when she left Dallas, and shared a YouTube video in which she joked with her doctor.
But Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the NIH’s Institute for Allergies and Infectious Diseases, said Friday “her condition is fair, stable.. she’s resting comfortably.”
Fauci declined to say why she was listed in fair condition, but said she had endured a long trip from Dallas.
“She’s not deteriorating,” Fauci said. He said she is sitting up and “she still has some symptoms” of Ebola.
“She’s very fatigued. This is a disease that wreaks havoc on you…This virus knocks you out,” he said.
Dr. Richard Davy added, “She’s interacting with the staff, she’s eating…I really think she’s doing quite well.”
Meanwhile, authorities have placed travel restrictions on 75 health care workers in Dallas who are being monitored for symptoms, Texas health department officials said.
People who entered Ebola patient Thomas Duncan’s hospital room are being directed not to go to public places such as grocery stores, or travel by plane, ship or train for 21 days after exposure, officials said Thursday night.
The travel restriction was instituted because of Vinson’s situation, authorities acknowledged.
“The direction comes after a health care worker involved in Duncan’s care had been on a flight shortly before diagnosis of the disease,” a statement by the Texas Department of State Health Services reads.
Vinson took a Frontier Airlines plane from Dallas to Cleveland Oct. 10. Three days later, she returned to Dallas on another Frontier Airlines flight. Because of a slightly elevated temperature — 99.5 degrees — she reported the condition before boarding, but it fell below the 100.4 reading for a fever, so she was allowed to board. A fever is one of the symptoms of Ebola, along with diarrhea, vomiting and abdominal pain.
Vinson arrived at Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital Tuesday morning with a fever and was diagnosed with Ebola in the early hours of Wednesday. She was relocated to Emory University Hospital’s isolation unit in Atlanta Wednesday night.
The situation has prompted Frontier Airlines to contact passengers on seven flights, two flights the nurse took, and five other flights involving the same planes.
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