UK HealthCare Participates in Readiness Plan Assessment for Serious Communicable Diseases
LEXINGTON, Ky. (July 21, 2015) -- UK HealthCare is participating on Tuesday in a site review and readiness assessment for managing serious communicable diseases by representatives from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Kentucky Department of Public Health.
UK HealthCare is participating on Tuesday in a site review and readiness assessment for managing serious communicable diseases by representatives from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Kentucky Department of Public Health.
Ebola, one of the more well-known and deadly communicable diseases, continues to be a critical health issue across the globe. Last year's crisis prompted the need for better preparedness for serious communicable illnesses, and state and federal governments have reached out to medical facilities across the country to be classified as official Assessment Hospitals to help manage future outbreaks.
"UK Healthcare has developed a robust response plan for communicable diseases, such as Ebola," said Dr. Derek Forster, UK HealthCare enterprise medical director for infection prevention and control. "This plan includes screening and triage, patient transport, provision of care, laboratory testing and staffing of our volunteer communicable disease team."
During the site visit on July 21, a review of UK HealthCare's Serious Communicable Disease Readiness Plan will provide an opportunity to receive feedback from respected national experts, Forster said. CDC and state public health representatives will be touring clinical areas and meeting with some of the response team members.
"Whether it is Ebola or another communicable disease, we know that as an academic medical center we have the expertise, resources and responsibility to the region to prepare for and appropriately manage the most serious diseases or situations," said Kim Blanton, UK HealthCare enterprise director for infection prevention and control and patient safety. "Throughout our enterprise, our health care providers undergo continuous education and training and this week's assessment is another means to evaluate our strengths and areas for further training."
As an assessment hospital, UK Chandler Hospital would care for a patient during the time before a confirmed diagnosis is made until the patient is transferred to one of about 55 designated Ebola treatment centers. The site for transfer from this area will be Emory University Hospital in Atlanta.
Assessment hospitals are hospitals identified by state health officials, in collaboration with local health authorities and hospital administration, as the point of referral for individuals being actively monitored and who develop symptoms compatible with Ebola. Designated Assessment Hospitals must have the capability to evaluate and care for someone who is having the first symptoms of Ebola for up to 96 hours; initiate and coordinate testing for Ebola and for other diseases alternative diagnoses; and either rule out Ebola or transfer the individual to an Ebola treatment center.
Hospitals not designated as an Assessment or Treatment facility will be considered Frontline Health Care Facilities, tasked with identifying patients with relevant exposure history and Ebola‐compatible symptom, isolating patients and initiating testing if low risk. If the patient is deemed high risk, then they would transfer for evaluation and testing to an Assessment Hospital.
Media Contact: Kristi Lopez, email@example.com