State News State News en-us Copyright 2014, All Rights Reserved. Feed content is not avaialble for commercial use. () () Thu, 23 Oct 2014 10:10:59 GMT Synapse CMS 10 144 25 2 Dead in Shooting at Ben Taub Hospital Pharmacy State News Wed, 22 Oct 2014 4:22:52 PM Associated Press 2 Dead in Shooting at Ben Taub Hospital Pharmacy

HOUSTON (AP) - Police say a man fatally shot a woman in the pharmacy of a Houston hospital before turning the gun on himself.

Authorities say the shooting Wednesday afternoon appears to be a murder-suicide that involved two people who worked at the pharmacy.

Police spokesman Victor Senties says the shooting was confined to the pharmacy at Ben Taub Hospital. He declined to elaborate but said there was no "active shooter."

No other injuries were reported. It was not immediately clear what prompted the shooting.

(Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)


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Man Condemned in Prison Guard's Death Loses Appeal State News Wed, 22 Oct 2014 4:20:19 PM Associated Press Man Condemned in Prison Guard's Death Loses Appeal

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) - Death row inmate Robert Pruett has lost an appeal at the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals.

Pruett is sentenced to die for the 1999 slaying of a Texas corrections officer. The state's highest criminal court on Wednesday upheld a lower court's finding that the results of palm print and DNA tests asked by the 35-year-old inmate are inconclusive.

Pruett was set to die last May but received a reprieve to appeal his trial-court ruling that the testing outcome wouldn't have changed the jury verdict. He awaits lethal injection for the fatal stabbing of Dan Nagle, a corrections officer at the McDonnell Unit near Beeville where Pruett already was serving 99 years for a Harris County slaying.

Evidence showed Pruett was angry about a disciplinary report from Nagle.

(Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)


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Nurse's Dog Tests Negative For Ebola State News Wed, 22 Oct 2014 11:01:52 AM Kirsten Schaffer Nurse's Dog Tests Negative For Ebola

DALLAS - Dallas city officials said Wednesday a nurse's dog who was tested for Ebola after his owner became infected with the virus has tested negative.

Nina Pham's dog, Bentley, was tested for Ebola and those samples were sent to a lab Monday.

Bentley will be monitored for a full 21-day period, similar to people exposed to the Ebola virus, and another specimen collection will be conducted again, before the end of the 21-day period.

The City of Dallas Animal Services is overseeing Bentley's care in partnership with the Texas Animal Health Commission, Texas A&M University, and the College of Veterinary Medicine & Biomedical Sciences, the state's Department of Health Services, the American Veterinary Medical Association, and the CDC. 

Pham is still being cared for at the National Institutes of Health or NIH, in Maryland. 

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Former West Texas School Official Pleads Guilty in Testing Scandal State News Wed, 22 Oct 2014 4:00:40 AM Former West Texas School Official Pleads Guilty in Testing Scandal

EL PASO, Texas (AP) - A former El Paso school administrator has pleaded guilty for her role in a testing scandal.

The El Paso Times reports ( ) Myrna Gamboa pleaded guilty in federal court this week to conspiracy to defraud the U.S. government. The former El Paso Independent School District administrator resigned in November 2012, hours before the board was to consider whether to fire her.

Gamboa was director of schools receiving funding through a federal program designed to improve test scores for low-income students.

Prosecutors say Gamboa conspired with others to inflate district state and federal accountability scores to acquire federal funding. She caused students to withdraw from school, improperly reclassified others and discouraged potential students from enrolling.

Gamboa is scheduled to be sentenced in January.


Information from: El Paso Times,

(Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)


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Police Officer Hospitalized In Drive-by Shooting State News Tue, 21 Oct 2014 7:06:07 AM Miranda Leah - @MirandaLeahTV Police Officer Hospitalized In Drive-by Shooting

EL PASO - A manhunt is underway in El Paso right now for someone who shot a police officer.

Witnesses say the officer had pulled a vehicle over onto the side of the road and was talking to the driver.

That's when a red car drove by and someone started firing at the police officer.

He was hit three times and is in the hospital right now in critical condition.

No new updates on that search.


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Texas Tech Player Injured In Shooting State News Mon, 20 Oct 2014 10:55:44 AM Texas Tech Player Injured In Shooting

LUBBOCK - Lubbock officials say a standout Texas Tech University football player has been hospitalized and released after suffering a laceration during an off-campus shooting.

University spokesman Blayne Beal tells the Lubbock Avalanche-Journal that junior wide receiver Jakeem Grant is "doing well" after being hospitalized Sunday morning. Grant is Tech's leading receiver with 50 catches for 629 yards and five touchdowns.

Beal didn't say how the Saturday night incident will affect Grant's role on the team.

Police Lt. Bryan Taylor says it's unclear what cut Grant. He says more than 20 rounds were fired from multiple weapons during a party at El Fronteriso.

Taylor says a second person was injured but the wound wasn't life threatening.

No arrests or charges have been reported.

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Driver, Horse Die After SUV Hits Man On Horseback State News Mon, 20 Oct 2014 10:51:17 AM Driver, Horse Die After SUV Hits Man On Horseback

HOUSTON - Police say an SUV driver and a horse were killed after the vehicle collided with a man on horseback in northwest Houston.

The crash occurred around 8 p.m. Sunday, when the driver of a Chevrolet Tahoe rammed into a man riding a horse. Both had been traveling westbound on West Little York Road in the Acres Home area.

After hitting the horse, the SUV slammed into a telephone pole and a chain-link fence.

The driver, whose name has not been released, was pronounced dead upon arrival at a nearby hospital.

The rider was hospitalized with non-life threatening injuries. The horse was killed in the crash.

In a statement Monday, Houston police said no charges had been filed in the incident.

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Daughters Find Parents Dead in Home State News Mon, 20 Oct 2014 8:15:55 AM Daughters Find Parents Dead in Home

HOUSTON (AP) - Houston police say the death of a couple found shot at home with their two daughters inside is likely a murder-suicide.

Police believe Raul Cruz shot his wife, 43-year-old Maribel Cruz, Sunday morning. They say Raul Cruz's fatal gunshot wound was likely self-inflicted. An autopsy will determine the cause of death.

One of their daughters contacted police when she noticed her stepfather's truck in the driveway that morning. Police say the daughters checked on the parents after hearing gunshots but went back to sleep because they thought they were asleep.

Neither the adult daughter nor the 15-year-old daughter was injured.

Police haven't released a motive in the killing.

(Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)


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US Military Ebola Team to Train in San Antonio State News Mon, 20 Oct 2014 8:02:16 AM US Military Ebola Team to Train in San Antonio

SAN ANTONIO (AP) - The Pentagon says specialized training for a new, 30-member U.S. military Ebola response team will take place at Fort Sam Houston in San Antonio.

The team will feature 20 critical care nurses and five doctors trained for infectious disease environments, as well as five trainers in infectious diseases protocols.

It will receive up to seven days of training with personnel from the U.S. Army Medical Research Institute of Infectious Diseases at the San Antonio post.

That includes drills on infection control and instruction on special protective equipment.

The team will then remain on "prepare to deploy" status for 30 days. That means it's on standby, ready to assist civilian medical personnel treating Ebola threats around the United States.

(Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)


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Cruise Ship returns to Galveston; Passenger Negative for Ebola State News Sun, 19 Oct 2014 3:42:38 PM Cruise Ship returns to Galveston; Passenger Negative for Ebola

GALVESTON, Texas (AP) - A cruise ship carrying a Dallas health care worker who was being monitored for Ebola returned to port Sunday after an eventful seven-day trip in which passengers had their vacations briefly disrupted with an infectious disease scare.

A lab supervisor who handled a specimen from a Liberian man who died from Ebola in Dallas showed no symptoms during the cruise but self-quarantined out of caution.

The Galveston County Health Department said the woman's lab test results indicated there was no risk to the public, and passengers of the cruise said they learned over the public address system she had tested negative. Carnival Cruise Lines didn't immediately respond to a request for comment about the lab tests.

Vicky Rey, vice president of guest care for Carnival Cruise Lines, said the woman and her husband drove themselves home after arriving in Galveston early Sunday. She showed no symptoms of Ebola, and the Galveston County Health Department said Sunday that lab tests on the passenger assured officials she and the public were not at risk.

The Ebola scare added some drama to the trip for the more than 4,000 passengers on the ship.

They learned through a public address system announcement that one of the passengers was being monitored for Ebola. They watched developments about the Ebola outbreak and their ship on the news. The boat was not allowed to dock in Cozumel, depriving passengers of one of the top port destinations. Travelers snapped pictures of a Coast Guard helicopter as it landed to get a blood sample from the passenger.

"We weren't worried. We ended up just hanging out and enjoying the rest of the trip," said Meredith Brooks, a Houston banker who was on her honeymoon during the cruise.

State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki said that when the woman left the U.S. on the cruise ship from Galveston, Texas, on Oct. 12 health officials were requiring only self-monitoring. Officials stepped up their response while the cruise was underway and two nurses were diagnosed with Ebola.

Carnival Cruise Lines said in a statement that the woman was "not deemed to be a risk to any guests or crew."

"We are in close contact with the CDC, and at this time it has been determined that the appropriate course of action is to simply keep the guest in isolation on board," the statement said, referring to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Petty Officer Andy Kendrick told The Associated Press that a Coast Guard crew flew in a helicopter Saturday to meet the Carnival Magic and retrieved a blood sample from the woman. He said the blood sample was taken to a state lab in Austin for processing.

The ship was refused clearance to dock in Cozumel, Mexico on Friday, a day after Belize refused to let the passenger leave the vessel. There were no restrictions placed on other passengers aboard the ship, officials said.

Passenger James Dinkley of Thelma, Texas, took the cruise to celebrate his one-year wedding anniversary with his wife. He said there was some initial confusion and agitation after they learned of the situation, were delayed in Belize for several hours and had the Cozumel visit cancelled. But he said the cruise line kept everyone informed with regular updates after that.

"There was a lot of confusion, especially when they canceled our Cozumel day," he said.

Carnival gave passengers credit for the missed Cozumel leg. They received $200 in credits and a 50 percent discount on future cruises.

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Should Ebola Concerns Result in Schools Closing? State News Sun, 19 Oct 2014 2:30:00 PM Should Ebola Concerns Result in Schools Closing?

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) - The Texas health commissioner says concerns over the spread of Ebola should not result in schools closing or the cancellation of school events.

Commissioner David Lakey issued a statement Sunday saying "there is no reason for schools to close ..."

He says children who live with a person being monitored for Ebola should not be excluded from school.

Lakey says none of the three people in Dallas infected with Ebola went to a school and normal cleaning procedures are sufficient for any school building.

The Belton school district temporarily closed three of its campuses after a family of four, including two students, traveled on the same flight as one of the two nurses diagnosed with the virus.

Health officials say the nurse was not displaying symptoms when she traveled.

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WHO Faulted for Ebola Failures as Obama Taps Czar State News Fri, 17 Oct 2014 5:52:26 PM Associated Press LONDON (AP) - The World Health Organization bungled efforts to halt the spread of Ebola in West Africa, an internal report revealed Friday, as President Barack Obama named a trusted political adviser to take control of America's frenzied response to the epidemic.

The stepped-up scrutiny of the international response came as U.S. officials rushed to cut off potential routes of infection from three cases in Texas, reaching a cruise ship in the Caribbean and multiple domestic airline flights. Republican lawmakers and the Obama administration debated the value of restricting travelers from entering the U.S. from countries where the outbreak began, without a resolution.

But with Secretary of State John Kerry renewing pleas for a "collective, global response" to a disease that has already killed more than 4,500 people in Africa, the WHO draft report pointed to serious errors by an agency designated as the international community's leader in coordinating response to outbreaks of disease.

The document - a timeline of the outbreak - found that WHO, an arm of the United Nations, missed chances to prevent Ebola from spreading soon after it was first diagnosed in Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea last spring, blaming factors including incompetent staff and a lack of information. Its own experts failed to grasp that traditional infectious disease containment methods wouldn't work in a region with porous borders and broken health systems, the report found.

"Nearly everyone involved in the outbreak response failed to see some fairly plain writing on the wall," WHO said in the report, obtained by The Associated Press. "A perfect storm was brewing, ready to burst open in full force."

The agency's own bureaucracy was part of the problem, the report found. It pointed out that the heads of its country offices in Africa are "politically motivated appointments" made by the WHO regional director for Africa, Dr. Luis Sambo, who does not answer to the agency's chief in Geneva, Dr. Margaret Chan.

Dr. Peter Piot, the co-discoverer of the Ebola virus, agreed that WHO acted far too slowly.

"It's the regional office in Africa that's the front line," said Piot, interviewed at his office in London. "And they didn't do anything. That office is really not competent."

WHO declined to comment on the document, which was not issued publicly, and said that Chan would be unavailable for an interview with the AP. She did tell Bloomberg News that she "was not fully informed of the evolution of the outbreak. We responded, but our response may not have matched the scale of the outbreak and the complexity of the outbreak."

Meanwhile, Obama moved to step up the U.S. response to the disease, naming Ron Klain, a former chief of staff to Vice President Joe Biden, as the administration's point man on Ebola.

Klain is a longtime Democratic operative who also served as a top aide to Vice President Al Gore. He does not have any medical or public health expertise. But the White House said he would serve as "Ebola response coordinator," suggesting his key role will be to synchronize the actions of many government agencies in combatting the disease.

"This is much broader than a medical response," White House spokesman Josh Earnest said, citing Klain's experience in the private as well as public sector and his relationships with Congress.

"All of that means he is the right person for the job, and the right person to make sure we are integrating the interagency response to this significant challenge," he said.

Republican lawmakers continued pushing the administration Friday to consider restricting travel to the U.S. from the three Ebola-stricken West African countries. But despite Obama's statement Thursday that he was not "philosophically opposed" to such a ban, Earnest affirmed the White House's resistance to such a move.

Republican Mike Leavitt, a former health secretary under President George W. Bush, said Friday that he sees "lots of problems" with such a ban. While it may seem like a good idea, Bush administration officials who considered it to contain bird flu concluded that it would not work, while raising a host of difficult questions about who would be allowed to travel.

Other nations have taken steps to prevent travelers from the affected areas from crossing their borders. The Central American nation of Belize announced that it would immediately stop issuing visas to people from West African countries where Ebola had spread.

U.S. officials continued their efforts to contain the fallout from the nation's first reported case of Ebola, Thomas Eric Duncan, a Liberian traveler who died last week at a Dallas hospital.

Officials said they were working to remove a hospital worker - who had handled an Ebola lab specimen - from a Caribbean cruise ship, although she had gone 19 days without showing any sign of the infection. The Carnival Cruise Lines ship was headed back to its home port of Galveston, Texas, on Friday after failing to get clearance to dock in Cozumel, Mexico, and officials in Belize would not allow the woman to leave the ship.

The lab worker and her spouse were in isolation and she is "not deemed to be a risk to any guests or crew," a cruise line spokeswoman said.

Doctors at the National Institutes of Health in Maryland said that a Dallas nurse, Nina Pham, brought there for Ebola treatment was very tired but resting comfortably Friday in fair condition.

"We fully intend to have this patient walk out of this hospital," Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases said.

Another nurse to contract Ebola, Amber Vinson, was being treated at Emory University Hospital in Atlanta.

Concerns persisted about people who might have been in contact with her during a recent trip between Texas and Ohio. Police said Vinson stayed at the home of her mother and stepfather in Tallmadge, northeast of Akron, and the home has been cordoned off with yellow tape. Eight individuals in northeast Ohio were under quarantine, health officials said.

Frontier Airlines said it would contact passengers on seven flights, including two that carried Vinson and others afterward that used the same plane.

Despite the stepped up attention to disease, though, World Bank President Jim Yong Kim warned Friday that officials in many countries were focused too much on their own borders.

"I still don't think that the world has understood what the possible downside risk is not just to the west African economy but to the global economy. And we are still losing the battle," he said.


Adam Geller reported from New York. Other AP writers who contributed to this story include Angela Charlton in Paris; Ricardo Alonso-Zaldivar, Jessica Gresko, Lara Jakes and Jim Kuhnhenn in Washington; David Dishneau in Frederick, Maryland; Ann Sanner in Columbus, Ohio; Michelle Chapman in New York; and Patrick Jones in Belize City.

(Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)


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Three More Babies Test Positive for TB in El Paso State News Thu, 16 Oct 2014 3:44:22 PM Three More Babies Test Positive for TB in El Paso

EL PASO, Texas (AP) - Three more babies have tested positive for tuberculosis after a nurse's assistant infected with the illness possibly exposed about 860 babies at an El Paso hospital's nursery.

El Paso Public Health Director Robert Resendes said Thursday that of the total of 11 cases at Providence Memorial Hospital, seven are possible false positives because they had been vaccinated against TB previously.

Parents of 95 percent of those possibly exposed have been contacted.

Preventive medical treatments have been offered for all positive cases and for 205 babies under 6 months of age. None of the positive cases have active TB, the often deadly and contagious form of the disease.

The worker reported TB-related symptoms in July but was allowed to continue working for weeks.


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School Bus Kills Cyclist State News Thu, 16 Oct 2014 4:43:33 AM School Bus Kills Cyclist

HOUSTON (AP) - Houston police are searching for a driver who they say fatally hit a 56-year-old bicyclist with a school bus and drove off.

Fifty-six-year-old cyclist Bobby Brooks of Houston was pronounced dead at the scene on Wednesday. Police say Brooks was riding through a crosswalk when the yellow bus hit him while making a turn.

Police say they don't know who the bus belongs to or where it was going. A Houston school district spokeswoman says the vehicle wasn't a district bus or one contracted to transport its students.

It's unclear if anyone else was onboard.

Police are investigating.

(Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)


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Health Officials Identify Second Healthcare Worker Diagnosed with Ebola State News Wed, 15 Oct 2014 2:50:32 PM Health Officials Identify Second Healthcare Worker Diagnosed with Ebola

DALLAS (AP) - The second health care worker diagnosed with Ebola in Texas is a 29-year-old nurse who treated a Liberian man in the days before he died of the disease in a Dallas hospital.

Medical records provided to The Associated Press by Thomas Eric Duncan's family show Amber Joy Vinson inserted catheters, drew blood, and dealt with Duncan's body fluids before he died last week. It's not clear how she contracted the virus.

Kent State University in Ohio says three employees are related to a Vinson, who visited family in Ohio and flew from Cleveland to Dallas shortly before she was diagnosed Wednesday.

A university statement says the woman is a graduate of Kent State, receiving degrees in 2006 and 2008, but didn't visit the college's campus on her most recent visit.



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Ex-Texas School Teacher Guilty in Child Porn Case State News Wed, 15 Oct 2014 1:00:27 PM Ex-Texas School Teacher Guilty in Child Porn Case

FORT WORTH, Texas (AP) - A former North Texas high school journalism teacher faces up to 60 years in federal prison for soliciting teens for child pornography.

Gregory Bogomol (BOH'-guh-mahl) of Fort Worth pleaded guilty Wednesday to two counts of production of child pornography.

The 38-year-old Bogomol, who formerly taught at Denton High School, faces sentencing Feb. 12 in Fort Worth.

The investigation began after the parents of a 15-year-old Louisiana boy reported he received suggestive cellphone messages from someone pretending to be a girl.

Prosecutors say Bogomol in April coerced a boy into sending a sexually explicit image of himself. Bogomol a few days later coerced another child to also send a suggestive image.

Bogomol resigned his teaching position shortly before being arrested in May.

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Dallas Nurses Cite Sloppy Conditions in Ebola Care State News Wed, 15 Oct 2014 6:38:01 AM Dallas Nurses Cite Sloppy Conditions in Ebola Care

DALLAS (AP) - A Liberian Ebola patient was left in an open area of a Dallas emergency room for hours, and the nurses treating him worked for days without proper protective gear and faced constantly changing protocols, according to a statement released late Tuesday by the largest U.S. nurses' union.

Nurses were forced to use medical tape to secure openings in their flimsy garments, worried that their necks and heads were exposed as they cared for a patient with explosive diarrhea and projectile vomiting, said Deborah Burger of National Nurses United.

Burger convened a conference call with reporters to relay what she said were concerns of nurses at Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital, where Thomas Eric Duncan - the first person to be diagnosed with Ebola in the U.S. - died last week.

Duncan died Oct. 8, and the hospital said Sunday that one of his nurses had tested positive for Ebola. She is hospitalized and was listed Tuesday in good condition. On Wednesday, Texas health officials announced that a preliminary test indicated a second, unidentified health care worker at the hospital had been infected with the disease.

RoseAnn DeMoro, executive director of Nurses United, said the statement came from "several" and "a few" nurses, but she refused repeated inquiries to state how many. She said the organization had vetted the claims, and that the nurses cited were in a position to know what had occurred at the hospital. She refused to elaborate.

Among the nurses' allegations was that the Ebola patient's lab samples were allowed to travel through the hospital's pneumatic tubes, opening the possibility of contaminating the specimen delivery system. The nurses also alleged that hazardous waste was allowed to pile up to the ceiling.

Duncan died Oct. 8, and the hospital said Sunday that one of his nurses had tested positive for Ebola. She is hospitalized and was listed Tuesday in good condition.

Wendell Watson, a Presbyterian spokesman, did not respond to specific claims by the nurses but said the hospital has not received similar complaints.

"Patient and employee safety is our greatest priority and we take compliance very seriously," he said in a statement. "We have numerous measures in place to provide a safe working environment, including mandatory annual training and a 24/7 hotline and other mechanisms that allow for anonymous reporting."

He said the hospital would "review and respond to any concerns raised by our nurses and all employees."

The nurses alleged that:

- Duncan was kept in a non-isolated area of the emergency department for several hours, potentially exposing up to seven other patients to Ebola;

- Patients who may have been exposed to Duncan were kept in isolation only for a day before being moved to areas where there were other patients;

- Nurses treating Duncan were also caring for other patients in the hospital;

- Preparation for Ebola at the hospital amounted to little more than an optional seminar for staff;

- In the face of constantly shifting guidelines, nurses were allowed to follow whichever ones they chose.

"There was no advance preparedness on what to do with the patient, there was no protocol, there was no system," Burger said.

Even today, Burger said, some hospital staff at the Dallas hospital do not have proper equipment to handle the outbreak.

"Hospital managers have assured nurses that proper equipment has been ordered but it has not arrived yet," she said.

The nurses' statement said they had to "interact with Mr. Duncan with whatever protective equipment was available," even as he produced "a lot of contagious fluids." Duncan's medical records, which his family shared with The Associated Press, underscore some of those concerns.

Almost 12 hours after he arrived in the emergency room by ambulance, his hospital chart says Duncan "continues to have explosive diarrhea, abdominal pain, nausea and projectile vomiting." He was feverish and in pain.

When Ebola was suspected but unconfirmed, a doctor wrote "using the disposable shoe covers should also be considered." At that point, by all protocols, those shoe covers should have been mandatory to prevent anyone from tracking contagious body fluids around the hospital.

A few days later, however, entries in the hospital charts suggest that protection was improving.

"RN entered room in Tyvek suits, triple gloves, triple boots, and respirator cap in place," wrote a nurse.

The Presbyterian nurses are not represented by Nurses United or any other union. DeMoro and Burger said the nurses claimed they had been warned by the hospital not to speak to the media or they would be fired. They did not specify whether the nurses making the claims were among Duncan's caregivers.

The AP has attempted since last week to contact dozens of individuals involved in Duncan's care. Those who responded to reporters' inquiries have so far been unwilling to speak.

David R. Wright, deputy regional administrator for the U.S. Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, which monitors patient safety and has the authority to withhold federal funding, said his agency is going to want to get all of the information the nurses provided.

"We can't talk about whether we're going to investigate or not, but we'd be interested in hearing that information," he said.

CDC officials did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

Duncan first sought care at the hospital's ER late on Sept. 25 and was sent home the next morning. He was rushed by ambulance back to the hospital on Sept. 28. Unlike his first visit, mention of his recent arrival from Liberia immediately roused suspicion of an Ebola risk, records show.

The CDC said Tuesday 76 people at the hospital could have been exposed to Duncan after his second ER visit. Another 48 people are being monitored for possible exposure before he was hospitalized.

(Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)


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Controversy Over Ebola Suit as Halloween Costumes State News Wed, 15 Oct 2014 4:31:50 AM Controversy Over Ebola Suit as Halloween Costumes

DALLAS - With Halloween fast approaching, stores in the US are busy stocking up on the latest scary costumes.

And popular this year - 'Hazmat' suits, respirators and gas masks.

Originally inspired by the hit series 'Breaking Bad,' if it looks like it fends off Ebola, it might be popular.

"I personally don't mind," said Monika Jachowicz, a resident in Arlington, Virginia.

"I think on Halloween people just want to have a good time. I don't see any harm in that," she said.

But in Dallas, where a third person was diagnosed as having the disease, people think it's insensitive.

"I really don't think people are thinking about that. I don't think they're thinking about the families and the victims," said Mikhael Gilmore, a Texas Resident.

So far, more than 4,500 people have lost their lives to Ebola. On Tuesday, the World Health Organisation projected the pace of infections accelerating in west Africa - to as many as 10,000 new cases a week within two months.


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Second Healthcare Worker Test Positive For Ebola State News Wed, 15 Oct 2014 4:16:39 AM Second Healthcare Worker Test Positive For Ebola

DALLAS (AP) - The Texas Department of State Health Services says that a second health care worker at a Dallas hospital who provided care for the first Ebola patient diagnosed in the U.S. has tested positive for the disease.

The department says in the statement emailed early Wednesday and posted on its website that the worker reported a fever Tuesday and was immediate isolated at Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital. It says a preliminary Ebola test was conducted late Tuesday at a state public health lab in Austin, Texas, and confirmatory testing will be conducted at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta.

The statement says the health care worker, who wasn't identified, was interviewed to identify any contacts or potential exposures.

Department spokeswoman Carrie Williams confirmed the release with The Associated Press.

(Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)


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Appeals Court Reinstates Texas Voter ID Law State News Tue, 14 Oct 2014 4:45:50 PM Associated Press Appeals Court Reinstates Texas Voter ID Law

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) - A federal appeals court on Tuesday reinstated Texas' tough voter ID law for the November election, which the U.S. Justice Department had condemned as the state's latest means of suppressing minority voter turnout.

The ruling by the New Orleans-based 5th Circuit Court of Appeals temporarily blocks last week's ruling by U.S. District Judge Nelva Gonzales Ramos in Corpus Christi, who determined the law unconstitutional and similar to a poll tax designed to dissuade minorities from voting.

The 5th Circuit did not rule on the merits of the law; instead, it determined it's too late to change the rules for the upcoming election. Early voting starts Oct. 20.

The law remains under appeal. For now, the ruling is a key victory for Republican-backed photo ID measures that have swept across the U.S. in recent years. The Texas law, considered the toughest of its kind in the nation, requires that an estimated 13.6 million registered Texas voters will need one of seven kinds of photo identification to cast a ballot.

The Justice Department says more than 600,000 of those voters, mostly blacks and Hispanics, lack eligible ID.

In her ruling last week, Gonzales Ramos, an appointee of President Barack Obama, called the law an "unconstitutional burden on the right to vote." Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott quickly sought an emergency ruling from the conservative-leaning appeals court before the upcoming election. Abbott is on the ballot as the Republican nominee for governor.

Nineteen states have laws requiring voters to show identification at the polls. Courts across the country have knocked down challenges - including at the U.S. Supreme Court - but the Texas case attracted unusual attention from U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder.

He brought the weight of his office into Texas after the Supreme Court last year struck down the heart of the Voting Rights Act, which had prohibited the state from enacting its voter ID law signed by Republican Gov. Rick Perry in 2011. Democrats and minority rights groups joined the Justice Department in the lawsuit.

The full Voting Rights Act had blocked Texas and eight other states with histories of discrimination from changing election laws without permission from the Justice Department or a federal court. Holder vowed to wring whatever protections he could from the new and weakened version, and made Texas a first target.

Abbott, who is favored to win the race against Democrat Wendy Davis to replace Rick Perry as governor, said minorities and whites alike supported the law in public opinion polls. Abbott's office also pointed to other states, such as Georgia and Indiana, where similar measures have been upheld.

But opponents slammed Texas' law as far more discriminatory. College students IDs aren't acceptable, but concealed handgun licenses are. Free voting IDs offered by the state require a birth certificate that costs as little as $3, but the Justice Department argued that traveling to get those documents imposes a burden on poor minorities.

As a result, opponents say, Texas has issued fewer than 300 free voter IDs since the law took effect. Georgia, meanwhile, has issued 2,200 voter IDs under a program with more robust outreach.

(Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)


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