The sight of a man with a clipboard standing near medical personel clad head-to-toe in hazmat gear was unusual enough to have many people wondering who he was. But the medical agency behind Ebola patient Amber Vinson’s transport said his presence wasn’t strange at all.
According to ABC News, the man helping take Vinson onto a waiting passenger jet from Dallas to atlanta was only following procedure for medical airline Phoenix Air.
A company spokesperson told ABC and other outlets that “clipboard man,” as he became known, is a protocol supervisor for the company.
“Our medical professionals in the biohazard suits have limited vision and mobility,” the spokesperson said. “It is the protocol supervisor’s job to watch each person carefully and give them verbal directions to ensure no close contact protocols are violated.”
Vinson was diagnosed with the virus after having been cleared to fly to Ohio last weekend by federal officials. She is the second health worker from Texas who has tested positive for Ebola. However, medical experts have maintained that the disease is difficult to catch.
CBS News medical correspondent Jon LaPook corroborated Phoenix Air’s account on Thursday, saying that no one working for the company has caught the virus following any of the company’s 11 Ebola patient transfers this year.
“When protocol is properly followed, healthcare workers can be protected from being infected with the Ebola virus,” LaPook stated.
Watch ABC News’ video of “clipboard man,” as aired on Thursday, below.