On Thursday afternoon, CNN chief medical correspondent Elizabeth Cohen read a prepared statement from Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital defending the decision to move Nina Pham, the first Texas healthcare worker infected with Ebola, to the National Institute of Health in Bethesda, MD.
“We believe that transferring Nina to the NIH is the right decision,” the statement read. “With many of the medical professionals who would normally staff the intensive care unit sidelined for continuous monitoring, it is in the best interest of the hospital employees, nurses, physicians and the community to give the hospital an opportunity to prepare for whatever comes next.”
“What I kind of read there is, there could be a third employee who comes in with an Ebola infection and we need to get ready for that person,” Cohen told CNN anchor Brooke Baldwin.
Baldwin then asked Cohen about reports from a CDC official that claimed hospital beds at Texas Health Presbyterian are two-thirds empty because of the fear of exposure to the virus.
“He [the CDC official] said that there’s 900 beds and 300 of them are full, because people are scared to come here,” Cohen said. “That is not a great situation for a hospital. One third of your beds full, that’s really financially problematic… it sort of behooves them in a way to get the Ebola patients out of the hospital. They want to start getting back to normal as soon as they can.”
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