A recent National Nurses United study suggests as many as 80 percent of the registered nurses who responded to the poll said the hospitals they work at have not communicated any policy with regard to the potential admission of patients infected with Ebola.
“I guess what we want to avoid is any mass hysteria about it” says Lisa Ambrosetti who’s been been a hospital nurse for more than 25 years.
Ambrosetti says she feels very confident and safe at Marian Regional Medical Center where she works.
“I’m not really concerned right now”, Ambrosetti says, “I think in general the hospital has started to make good policies and put things in effect beforehand instead of having it happen in other areas where someone comes in and is not recognized right away.”
“Certainly in the Santa Maria area, hopefully we won’t have anyone that’s been exposed to it”, Ambrosetti says, “and individuals are truthful when they travel to a country and come back and report everything that they need to.”
Dignity Health which operates Marian Regional Medical Center, as well as Arroyo Grande Community Hospital and French Hospital in San Luis Obispo, issued a statement to Central Coast News saying it already treats and manages dangerous forms of infectious disease and has designated isolation rooms for highly contagious patients including those with Ebola.
Dignity Health says its in steady contact with local and state authorities as well as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for the latest information on the Ebola virus and any recommendations that might follow.
It says hospital infection control specialists are communicating with all healthcare workers including the medical staff to ensure processes are in place for identifying, isolating and treating any potential cases that may be presented to dignity health hospitals and clinics.
“As a healthcare professional, but just as a person too, that everyone is concerned about maybe, you know, causing some big epidemic here”, Ambrosetti says, “but its nice to know at least in our area we’re getting ahead of it with our policies and procedures, being proactive.”
Ambrosetti says there is routine training for all medical staff with regard to caring for patients with infectious disease
“We try to make sure that we’re really using our precautions whether it be any kind of contagion, even TB”, Ambrosetti says, “that we’re wearing the correct masks while we care for those patients, its constantly being reinforced, the supplies are always there for us, we’re never having to worry about not having something, I feel well protected and I think the hospital does a good job taking care of their employees in that respect.”