Ebola preparedness continues in Washington state hospitals

Preparations for identifying, isolating, evaluating and treating patients with suspected or confirmed Ebola virus disease in Washington state continues, even though the likelihood of the virus appearing in the state is still considered low.

Using guidelines established by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, hospitals throughout the state are making plans to rapidly identify, isolate and safely evaluate people with suspected Ebola.

In addition to standard preparation for screening and identification, eight hospitals have committed to working towards the level of preparation that is required for the ongoing care and treatment of a patient with Ebola, as needed.

Those eight hospitals are the Harrison Medical Center – Bremerton campus, MultiCare Tacoma General Hospital, Providence Regional Medical Center Everett, Providence Sacred Heart Medical Center and Children’s Hospital in Spokane, Seattle Children’s Hospital, Swedish Medical Center (Issaquah), Virginia Mason Hospital and UW Medicine.

These eight hospitals are preparing to care for a person with Ebola for the duration of the illness, but all hospitals across Washington have to be ready to identify and initially care for a patient who presents with possible Ebola infection. Hospitals in Washington will continue to train and drill appropriate

staff.

“The chance of a confirmed case of Ebola in Washington is very low, but in the event it happens we want to be sure we have the capacity to provide ongoing care to a patient,” said Dr. Kathy Lofy, state health officer.



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