Bridal shop sues Texas Health Resources for $1M over Ebola-infected nurse's visit

A bridal shop in Akron, Ohio, is suing Texas Health Resources for more than $1 million, alleging a THR hospital was negligent by allowing a nurse who had contracted Ebola in 2014 to freely interact with others despite exposure to the virus, according to the Dallas Morning News

In October 2014, nurses Amber Joy Vinson and Nina Pham cared for the first U.S. patient diagnosed with the virus, Thomas Eric Duncan, at Texas Health Presbyterian of Dallas. Mr. Duncan died Oct. 8.

On Oct. 10, Ms. Vinson traveled to her hometown of Akron to shop for wedding dresses at Coming Attractions Bridal and Formal. She returned to Dallas Oct. 13, and was diagnosed with Ebola two days later.

Health officials closed the bridal shop for a deep clean of its inventory and premises. It reopened in November.

The lawsuit claims the store subsequently became stigmatized as "the Ebola store." It alleges it lost hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of business, with customers refusing to enter the premises and demanding refunds. Coming Attractions Bridal and Formal officially closed in January 2015.

The lawsuit alleges Arlington-based THR did not provide nurses with the "necessary training, instruction and personal protective equipment to stop the spread of the disease." The store claims Ms. Vinson relied upon the hospital's "negligent and unfounded reassurances" when she visited the shop.

Ms. Pham, the other nurse diagnosed with Ebola, sued THR in March 2015. Among her allegations is the claim that she and her colleagues were not properly prepared or trained for treating Ebola, and nurses made their own personal protective gear protocol in absence of instruction.

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