MDPH Hospital Evacuation Toolkit

October 30th, 2014 in Ebola, Public Health

The 2014 edition of the Massachusetts Department of Public Health Hospital Evacuation Toolkit is available online here. This resource was developed by the Harvard School of Public Health Emergency Preparedness and Response Exercise Program in collaboration with the MDPH Office of Preparedness and Emergency Management.

International Society for Infectious Diseases offers CDC Ebola Safety Training Travel Grants

October 30th, 2014 in Ebola, Public Health

The International Society for Infectious Diseases is offering travel grants to individuals attending the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Ebola safety training courses being held in Anniston, Alabama. Licensed clinicians that have been admitted to the class and have plans to deploy to West Africa are eligible. Grants will be accepted on a rolling basis and distributed until funds are depleted. For more information and to apply for funds, visit the following links:
ISID travel grant application page
CDC training course information page
Deadline: Open until funds are depleted

Army Involvement in Ebola Response Communications Infrastructure

October 30th, 2014 in Disaster Response, Ebola, Governmental Policy, Homeland Security, Public Health

In this article, Kevin McCaney of discusses how the Army is providing a communications backbone for Ebola response organizations.

Joint Commission Ebola Standards

October 30th, 2014 in Ebola, Public Health

While surveying healthcare organizations readiness to receive a confirmed or suspected Ebola patient, the Joint Commission accreditation chapters identified in this document are focal to identifying strengths and/or gaps to safely and effectively managing the infectious Ebola patient within an organization, while minimizing the risk of transmission to self or others.

Occupational Health & Safety Magazine: Dealing with Ebola — and Ebola-Related Fears — in the Workplace

October 27th, 2014 in Ebola, Public Health

In a recent blog post, Ben J. Kim and Rachel Sanders discuss the legal conundrums faced by employers and employees who face infectious disease related fears in the workplace.

Community Health Resilience Initiative Ebola resources

October 27th, 2014 in Ebola, Public Health

The Community Health Resilience Initiative has been compiling a list of Ebola, Enterovirus and Emerging Infectious Disease Resources.

Congressional Research Service Report on Federal and State Quarantine and Isolation Authority

October 27th, 2014 in Ebola, Public Health

The Congressional Research Service Report on “Federal and State Quarantine and Isolation Authority” is available online here.

Dr. Anthony Fauci Fox News Interview

October 27th, 2014 in Ebola, Public Health

In this video, Dr. Anthony Fauci discusses with Chris Wallace of Fox News how inadequate World Health Organization protocols are likely why Dallas healthcare workers were infected with Ebola.

State Level Ebola Crisis Responses

October 27th, 2014 in Ebola, Public Health

Several states are taking the Ebola crisis into their own hands. Ohio and Texas have approved funds for equipment and facilities, and Georgia has established an Ebola response team and is monitoring 20 travelers from West Africa.

CDC Influenza Pandemic Preparedness and Responce Framework

October 24th, 2014 in Public Health

The CDC has updated its Preparedness and Response Framework for Influenza Pandemics. – 26 Sept 2014

Some extracts:

CDC has updated its framework to describe influenza pandemic progression using six intervals (two prepandemic and four pandemic intervals) and eight domains. The six intervals of the updated framework are as follows: 1) investigation of cases of novel influenza, 2) recognition of increased potential for ongoing transmission, 3) initiation of a pandemic wave, 4) acceleration of a pandemic wave, 5) deceleration of a pandemic wave, and 6) preparation for future pandemic waves.

Influenza Risk Assessment Tool (IRAT): IRAT is used by the U.S. government and the WHO Global Influenza Surveillance and Response System as a risk assessment process that involves data gathering, discussion, and consensus building among subject-matter experts to assign a risk score. Ten predefined risk elements are given a risk score.

Pandemic Severity Assessment Framework (PSAF): PSAF is based on transmissibility and clinical severity parameters and uses different scales for initial assessments in an emerging pandemic, and for later, more refined assessments. The initial assessment, performed early in the outbreak when epidemiologic data are limited, uses a dichotomous scale of low-moderate versus moderate-high transmissibility and severity. The later assessment, performed when more reliable data are available, is more refined, using a 5-point scale for transmissibility and a 7-point scale for clinical severity.

Planning and response efforts for recent novel influenza-A viruses and pandemics have been organized into eight domains to ensure that subject-matter expertise is properly applied to all aspects of the event. The decisions and actions are further stratified into these domains so that the trajectory of planning and response activities for any one domain can be more easily followed. The eight domains are incident management, surveillance and epidemiology, laboratory, community mitigation, medical care and countermeasures, vaccine, risk communications, and state/local coordination.