Good morning, and happy Thursday. Here are some of the stories we’re following today:
1. Hospital missteps surface over Ebola diagnosis
The Dallas hospital that first saw the Liberian national who was complaining of fever and abdominal pain allowed him to leave without fully screening him, health officials acknowledged Wednesday. Two days later, on Sunday, that patient returned — and was subsequently diagnosed with Ebola. His nephew claims it was he who called the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention about his concern. “I called them to ask them why is it a patient that might be suspected of this disease was not getting appropriate care,” nephew Joseph Weeks told NBC News. His uncle, identified as Thomas Eric Duncan, remains in stable but serious condition. Read more in HEALTH.
2. Secret Service director resigns after security screw-ups
Julia Pierson, grilled by a House committee on Tuesday for security blunders, officially stepped down Wednesday after another department slip up came to light. On Sept. 16, an armed security contractor with an assault record rode in the same elevator with President Barack Obama in Atlanta, according to a Washington Post report. While the man never actually threatened Obama, protocol says armed civilians are not supposed to be that close to the president. The White House only learned the details of that encounter on Tuesday, shortly before they became public. A permanent replacement for Pierson must still be named. Read more in NEWS.
3. Hong Kong’s youth threatens to step up protests
The pro-democracy protesters who’ve been flooding Hong Kong’s streets for the past week are demanding the resignation of Chief Executive Leung Chun-ying by midnight Thursday — or else they’ll begin occupying government buildings. But police officials are warning of serious consequences should that happen. Amid all of the turmoil over more voter and government autonomy for Hong Kong, protesters have been trying to keep the peace — even collecting garbage and scrubbing out graffiti. Read more in NEWS.
4. NFL player implicated in alleged sexual assault
Investigators are looking into accusations that Dallas Cowboys defensive back C.J. Spillman sexually assaulted a female in a Texas hotel room on Sep. 20. Spillman then played on Sept. 21 at St. Louis, and again on Sept. 28 against the Saints. On Sept. 26, the alleged victim’s lawyer, Gloria Allred, alerted NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell to the allegations. But it’s unclear whether the NFL or the team knew about the initial allegations. This could wind up being the latest scandal to tarnish the NFL after the domestic violence cases involving Ray Rice and Adrian Peterson. Read more at NBC SPORTS.
5. White mom sues sperm bank for wrong order
Ohio mom Jennifer Cramblett thought she was being inseminated with a white man’s sperm in 2011, but later learned it was actually from a black donor. Now she’s suing the sperm bank for the mix-up. While the girl is a “healthy child,” Cramblett’s lawyer said, the family has been suffering from intolerance and racially insensitivity in their small town. Cramblett said she wants the sperm bank held accountable for its mistake. “Many people could have already had this happen to them,” Cramblett told NBC News. “It’s disheartening, and I would never want somebody else to be scared to go through this process.” Read more in HEALTH.
6. Are latest respiratory deaths linked to enterovirus?
A spike in respiratory illnesses in children — and a spate of deaths — has officials investigating whether enterovirus D-68 is to blame. In the latest potential connection, a 10-year-old Rhode Island girl died last week after suffering both a bacterial infection and infection from enterovirus D-68, Rhode Island health officials said. The virus, which has been gaining more attention, was also found in three other patients who died in September, according to the CDC. Read more in HEALTH.
… What’s trending today?
Politicians in Ukraine — and now their staff — are getting a true taste of public opinion. After lawmakers have been filmed getting tossed into garbage bins by unruly crowds, another strange incident has been caught on camera: An unidentified hooded man threw an entire cake at Oleh Makhnitsky, an aide to President Petro Poroshenko.