ATLANTA –– A Dallas nurse who flew from Texas to Ohio and back before being diagnosed with Ebola was released from an Atlanta hospital today after tests showed she was virus-free, a hospital spokeswoman said.
Amber Vinson, 29, left Emory University Hospital after attending a 1 p.m. news conference where she made a statement, Emory spokeswoman Holly Korschun told The Associated Press.
Vinson worked as a nurse at Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital Dallas and cared for Thomas Eric Duncan, a Liberian man who died of Ebola at the hospital on October 8.
Vinson’s family announced October 22 that doctors could no longer detect the deadly virus in her body, a step toward recovery her mother described as an answered prayer.
Vinson’s case gained increased attention after it was revealed she had flown from Texas to Ohio and back before she was diagnosed with the virus. Health officials say she visited the Akron, Ohio, area October 10 to 13 to prepare for her wedding. Officials were monitoring the health of 164 people in Ohio who were believed to have had contact with her or to have been near her.
Vinson was one of two nurses who became infected while caring for Duncan. The other infected nurse Nina Pham was released October 24 from a hospital attached to the National Institutes of Health near Washington.
It remains unclear exactly how the nurses became infected.
Vinson attended to Duncan on September 30, the day he tested positive for Ebola, according to medical records that Duncan’s family released to The Associated Press. Like Pham, the reports note that Vinson wore protective gear and a face shield, hazardous materials suit, and protective footwear. At the time, Duncan’s body fluids
were highly infectious if someone made contact with them. At one point, Vinson inserted a catheter into Duncan.