The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is tightening previous infection control guidance for health care workers caring for patients with Ebola, to ensure there is no ambiguity. The guidance focuses on specific personal protective equipment (PPE) health care workers should use and offers detailed step-by-step instructions for how to put the equipment on and take it off safely.
Recent experience from safely treating patients with Ebola at Emory University Hospital, Nebraska Medical Center and National Institutes of Health Clinical Center are reflected in the guidance.
The enhanced guidance is centered on three principles:
- All health care workers undergo rigorous training and are practiced and competent with PPE, including taking it on and off in a systemic manner
- No skin exposure when PPE is worn
- All workers are supervised by a trained monitor who watches each worker taking PPE on and off
All patients treated at Emory University Hospital, Nebraska Medical Center and the NIH Clinical Center have followed the three principles. None of the workers at these facilities have contracted the illness.
Employers, under the General Duty Clause of the Occupational Safety and Health (OSH) Act, you are responsible for keeping your employees informed about health issues that could affect them. With the Ebola virus on everyone’s mind, get a copy of Personnel Concepts’ new Ebola Information Poster to help fulfill your obligation regarding this potentially serious threat.