Patient Prompts Quarantine at Memphis Hospital

Hazmat teams responded to VA Medical Center in Memphis when a 62-year-old man came to the emergency room complaining of nausea and dizziness, after which three hospital workers began suffering similar symptoms, Friday, Sept. 24, 2010.
Last Updated 2:50 p.m. ET

Hazmat teams responded to a veterans hospital after a patient complaining of nausea and difficulty breathing entered the emergency room this morning, and hospital workers began suffering the same symptoms.

CBS Affiliate WREG reports that around 7:00 a.m. Friday a 62-year-old man walked into the VA Medical Center in Memphis with what appeared to be signs he was suffering from chemical exposure.

He was isolated, and three medical workers began decontaminating him, reports WREG correspondent Mike Matthews. But as he was being treated, the hospital employees workers became ill, with similar symptoms.

Those employees were then also quarantined, reports Matthews.

HazMat crews were also sent to the man's Memphis home looking for clues.

"We are trying to determine what the source of this chemical is, or if it was a chemical," said Wayne Cooke of the Memphis Fire Dept.

Two of the hospital employees have recovered and were released from quarantine, but patients are not currently being accepted by ambulance or in the emergency room.