Medford swine flu patient still critical

A Medford woman infected with the H1N1 virus who was transported to Portland to be placed on special life-saving equipment remained in critical condition late Thursday.

Jacquelyn Cordero, 30, was in Legacy Emanuel Medical Center, where she was connected to an extracorporeal membrane oxygenation machine, which provides both cardiac and respiratory support to patients whose heart and lungs are so severely diseased or damaged that they no longer function.

She was taken to Portland by ambulance late Wednesday from Rogue Valley Medical Center. Earlier that day, a Grants Pass resident, Zachary Painter, 32, who also was diagnosed with the H1N1 virus, was transported by ambulance to Emanuel to be hooked up to another ECMO device. He also is in critical condition, according to an Emanuel spokeswoman.

No ECMOs are available at hospitals in Jackson or Josephine counties. Emanuel has four, including two that are used in neonatal intensive care. An earlier story incorrectly stated the facility had six of the machines.

Cordero, the daughter of Johnny and Carolyn Cordero of Medford, has no health insurance. Friends have established the Jacquelyn Cordero Medical Fund at Bank of America.

Her illness is the third misfortune to strike the extended family since mid-September.

Her uncle, Army Sgt. Tom Rollason, 43, of Medford, was critically wounded Sept. 20 by an improvised explosive device while in a truck convoy near Kandahar, Afghanistan. The soldier, whose wife, Sandee, is Johnny Cordero's sister, is in Walter Reed Army Medical Center in Washington, D.C. Johnny Cordero is pastor of the Lamb's Home Fellowship in Medford

A day after the sergeant was injured by the roadside bomb, his father, Thomas F. Rollason, 67, died after a long battle with cancer in North Versailles, Pa.

Although most people infected with the H1N1 virus, also known as swine flu, don't get as sick as the two patients sent to Emanuel, the illness should not be ignored, said Dr. Ilana Porzecanski, an internal medicine specialist at RVMC.

"If it is possible, everyone should consider getting a vaccination (for H1N1)," Porzecanski said in an earlier interview. "People we've been seeing who are the most ill are in their 20s and 30s."

Physicians have encouraged people with influenza symptoms to stay home, drink plenty of liquids and stay away from hospital emergency departments unless their condition deteriorates dramatically.

Friends of Jacquelyn Cordero can leave messages for her at

Reach reporter Paul Fattig at 776-4496 or e-mail him at

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