Via the Chicago Tribune: 2nd MERS patient spent 4 hours in busy ER waiting room. Excerpt:
The second U.S. patient to be diagnosed with the deadly Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) spent at least four hours in the public waiting room of a busy Florida emergency department before he was seen by a doctor, a hospital official said.
Almost eight more hours passed before staff at Orlando's Dr. P. Phillips Hospital determined the patient had traveled from Saudi Arabia, where he worked at a hospital, began to suspect his exposure to MERS and had him moved to an isolation room, the hospital's chief quality control officer said.
The official, Dr. Antonio Crespo, said that as of Tuesday, he had changed procedures in the emergency department of Dr. P. Phillips Hospital so that any patient who comes in with flu-like symptoms will be asked whether they traveled to Saudi Arabia or other countries experiencing MERS outbreaks.
The extended window of time may have exposed hospital staff and other patients to the virus, which is responsible for a worsening outbreak in Saudi Arabia and is estimated to kill about a third of infected patients.