Hospital officials at the Texas Children's Hospital in Houston confirmed a nurse was under investigation after posting about a toddler testing positive for measles. According to the Houston Chronicle, the nurse in question has since been fired from the hospital.
The nurse was barred from treating patients after posting about the young patient's condition on an anti-vaccination page on Facebook called Proud Parents of Unvaccinated Children - Texas while she was being investigated, the hospital confirmed to multiple media outlets. While the page has since been deleted, a concerned parent took screenshots of the nurse's post and shared it on the hospital's Facebook page on Friday.
The children's hospital took swift action just four days after learning about the nurse's Facebook activity. The toddler – who was somewhere between the age of one and 3-years-old, was treated for measles in the Energy Corridor of the hospital's west campus.
"I think it's easy for us nonvaxxers to make assumptions but most of us have never and will never see one of theses diseases," the Texas nurse wrote, according to the screenshots.
"[F]or the first time in my career I saw measles this week. Actually most of my coworkers and the ER docs saw measles for the first time as well. And honestly, it was rough. The kid was super sick. Sick enough to be admitted to the ICU and he looked miserable."
The nurse also added that this case of the measles did not change her stance on vaccines.
"By no means have I changed my vax stance, and I never will. But I just wanted to share my experience and how much worse it was than I expected."
According to ABC News, the nurse also revealed the patient had recently traveled to a place "where measles is very common" and speculated he did not contract the disease within the United States.
A representative of the hospital responded to the concerned parent's post that they were aware of the situation.
"Thank you for your post. We are aware of this situation and have started a thorough investigation. We take these matters very seriously."The hospital later edited their response to include that they did not share the same views as the nurse and that she did not represent the organization.
According to Houston Chronicle, the hospital has since released a statement that – after an investigation – the nurse was fired.
"We were made aware that one of our nurses posted protected health information regarding a patient on social media. We take these matters very seriously as the privacy and well-being of our patients is always a top priority. After an internal investigation, this individual is no longer with the organization."Prior to the decision to fire the nurse, the hospital's Facebook page lit up with comments encouraging the hospital to fire the nurse. After the hospital announced the decision to fire the nurse, people began to comment on the page again – praising the hospital for the decision.
The toddler's measles case would make the eighth case in the state of Texas this year.