How One Hospital Prepared to Treat Patients with Ebola

In response to the 2014 Ebola epidemic, the largest in history, MedStar Health began a focused program to improve healthcare provider response to patients with suspected or confirmed Ebola infection. While these actions are being taken in response to the recent Ebola outbreak, these practices and procedures also will help protect our staff when treating any patient with a contagious disease.

To ensure we had an accurate understanding of the disease process and best practices for caring with patients suspected or confirmed of having Ebola, we visited other healthcare facilities in the county and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). We solicited input from our staff, including nursing, infectious disease and corporate legal counsel to ensure our training was complete and in line with current best practices. Because of our preparation, we are vetted by the CDC as one of the 35 hospitals in the US as an Ebola certified hospital.

I had the opportunity to participate in developing the phase 1 and phase 2 training programs of instruction, as well as participating in a video shoot of the donning and doffing procedures using either a surgical mask or a powered air purifier (PAPR), which has been turned into a digital application which clinicians can access via their smart phones. Phase 3 training is being developed.

Read the rest of this article in the current issue of Homeland Security Today.

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The Government Technology & Services Coalition's Homeland Security Today (HSToday) is the premier news and information resource for the homeland security community, dedicated to elevating the discussions and insights that can support a safe and secure nation. A non-profit magazine and media platform, HSToday provides readers with the whole story, placing facts and comments in context to inform debate and drive realistic solutions to some of the nation’s most vexing security challenges.

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