NEW PORT RICHEY - The emergency room at Morton Mease North Bay Hospital in New Port Richey did not accept patients by ambulance for most of the day Thursday after a case of bed bugs was discovered on a patient. That patient, whose identity was not released, came into the facility, 6600 Madison St., on Thursday morning and was discovered to be infected with bed bugs, according to hospital spokeswoman Beth Hardy. As a result, the emergency room was closed and evaluated to determine if anyone else had been infected. No other patients were infected, Hardy said. The seven additional patients inside the 15-bed ER facility were moved to a different unit in the hospital.
Patients that walk in were being accepted, she said. "I believe it was confined to one person, but there might have been a family member involved as well, but that was it," Hardy said. "As far as what I've heard in terms of has it gone to other people or team members, that kind if thing, I've not heard that and don't believe that is the case." The emergency room was expected to fully re-open Thursday night. The hospital works with an outside contractor for incidents like these, she said. "We have a whole process in place to handle this situation when it happens," Hardy said. "Hospitals have lots of processes and that process was activated and we are going through the process right now." firstname.lastname@example.org (813) 371-1860 Twitter: @EDanielsTBO