Homeland Security Watch

News and analysis of critical issues in homeland security

August 20, 2014

Boston prepares for Ebola

Filed under: Public Health & Medical Care — by Arnold Bogis on August 20, 2014

Here is a good example of a local public health system getting ahead of the potential (just wanted to underline that point) threat of Ebola appearing in U.S. cities.

The Boston Public Health Commission (BPHC) hosted a media briefing Wednesday morning with various leaders of the city’s public health branches to outline the plans for the “very low” likelihood that the deadly Ebola virus disease (EVD) would make it to Massachusetts.

“While the risk to our residents is very low, it is always better to prepare so that we can appropriately identify and care for suspect cases and work with the community to prevent further illness,” said Dr. Barbara Ferrer, executive director of the Boston Public Health Commission (BPHC). “We want a well-coordinated plan in place in the event a case of EVD is found in the city.”

Apparently, this morning’s briefing was not a one off:

This morning’s media briefing in Boston was the first of many public awareness campaign steps city health officials are taking in order to prepare Massachusetts and Boston in the case of an outbreak.

“As a result of years of practice, investment and responding to real emergencies, hospitals in Boston are well equipped and trained to appropriately and safely care for a suspect case of EVD,” said John Erwin, executive director of the Conference of Boston Teaching Hospitals. “To ensure the best possible preparations, however, hospitals will need the support of city, state and federal health officials. That’s why this planning effort is so important.”

While specifically concerning Ebola, this message is about public health threats and even homeland security in general:

“Every successful preparedness campaign requires the support and strong involvement of the community,” said Atyia Martin, director of the BPHC Public Health Preparedness Program. “We will work hard to make sure that residents have the information and resources that they need to stay informed and healthy. That is what this effort is all about.”

As the Boston.com article points out, learn more about the Ebola and the city’s public awareness campaign at bphc.org/ebola.

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3 Comments »

Comment by William R. Cumming

August 21, 2014 @ 2:15 am

Does Public Health in the USA owe a debt to the story of “Typhoid Mary”?

Comment by William R. Cumming

August 21, 2014 @ 2:19 am

Extract fro WIKI:

Mary Mallon (September 23, 1869 – November 11, 1938), better known as Typhoid Mary, was the first person in the United States identified as an asymptomatic carrier of the pathogen associated with typhoid fever. She was presumed to have infected 51 people, three of whom died, over the course of her career as a cook.[1] She was twice forcibly isolated by public health authorities and died after a total of nearly three decades in isolation.

Contents [hide]
1 Early life
2 Career
2.1 Investigation
2.2 First quarantine (1907–1910)
2.3 Release, name-change and second quarantine (1915–1938)
3 Death
4 Legacy
5 In popular culture
6 References
7 Further reading
8 External links

Comment by Donald Quixote

August 22, 2014 @ 10:21 am

How refreshing and unique – Boston Strong.

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