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"We Have A System Failure" CDC Chief Blasted For Scapegoating Ebola 'Protocol Breach'

Do not panic. Ebola is not very contagious at all. That remains the mantra from health and political officials in America.. and as far as the nurse who was treating now-dead Dallas Ebola patient Thomas Eric Duncan, it was user error, according to CDC Director Frieden. As Reuters reports, some healthcare experts are bristling at the assertion by a top U.S. health official that a “protocol breach” caused the Dallas nurse to be infected with Ebola while caring for a dying patient, saying the case instead shows how far the nation’s hospitals are from adequately training staff to deal with the deadly virus, "you don't scapegoat and blame when you have a disease outbreak... We have a system failure. That is what we have to correct."

 

 

As Reuters reports,

Some healthcare experts are bristling at the assertion by a top U.S. health official that a “protocol breach” caused a Dallas nurse to be infected with Ebola while caring for a dying patient, saying the case instead shows how far the nation’s hospitals are from adequately training staff to deal with the deadly virus.

 

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It was not immediately clear whether the Texas hospital prepared its staff with simulation drills before admitting Duncan, but a recent survey of nurses nationwide suggests few have been briefed on Ebola preparations. Officials at the hospital did not respond to requests for comment.

 

Some experts also question the CDC’s assertion that any U.S. hospital should be prepared to treat an Ebola patient as the outbreak ravaging West Africa begins to spread globally. Given the level of training required to do the job safely, U.S. health authorities should consider designating a hospital in each region as the go-to facility for Ebola, they said.

 

"You don't scapegoat and blame when you have a disease outbreak," said Bonnie Castillo, a registered nurse and a disaster relief expert at National Nurses United, which serves as both a union and a professional association for U.S. nurses. "We have a system failure. That is what we have to correct."

 

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In many cases, hospitals "post something on a bulletin board referring workers and nurses to the CDC guidelines. That is not how you drill and practice and become expert," she said.

 

CDC spokesman Tom Skinner said the agency is still investigating the case of the Dallas nurse, but stressed that "meticulous adherence to protocols" is critical in handling Ebola. "One slight slip can result in someone becoming infected."

 

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"Doctors and nurses get lost in patient care. They do things that put themselves at risk because their lens is patient-driven," Kaufman said. In Dallas, "I suspect no one was watching to make sure the people who were taking care of the patients were taking care of themselves," he said.

 

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"Towards of end of the illness, the virus is trying to live and thrive. It's trying to get out of the person's body. It's producing massive amounts of fluid," he said.

 

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“Every hospital can then prevent the spread of Ebola, but not every hospital in the U.S. can admit a patient in the hospital for long-term care,” he said.

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So - let's get this straight - Ebola is a deadly disease but is not easily spread (so don't panic) but if you are a healthcare worker a slight slip and you are done...