A sunny Saturday in October, here in Middletown enjoying the 4th quarter NYS ENA council meeting. Good attendance today with one visitor, David Greenberg pres-elect from NJ. Trying to get business as well as orientation of new officers, installation of officers for 2015 and various other stuff accomplished. We had an extensive discussion on what facilities are doing to prep for Ebola. Since the CDC and DOH are changing their recommendations almost daily it’s difficult to keep up. So far facilities seem to be managing the few pts who have presented well. I think there is more fear on the part of non healthcare workers as to contact and ability to pass on the virus than for HIV which has similar risk factors: contact w/blood and body fluids. A work in progress.
Remember back in the 80’s when HIV/AIDs first came to light? Everyone was so paranoid but with education, good infection control practices and PPE we were prepared for safe practice, safe care. Here we are again, with the Ebola virus now in the US and seeming to spread, once more being fearful. According to the CDC, Ebola is passed only with direct contact with body fluids-blood, stool, urine, saliva-and must be in contact with mucous membranes or an open wound. Every hospital has infection control equipment; everyone has been fitted for a mask or the dreaded PAPR. We have practiced at least yearly donning and doffing the gown/mask etc. BUT do we really practice what we preach? Are we really as concientious as we could be about infection control. Many of the diseases we wear that equipment for- TB, pertussis, even HIV- are either cureable or at least manageable today. Thus far there is no cure for Ebola, only treatment of the symptoms. For this reason especially we need to be aware of our PPE use, hand washing, and control of products used in the care of our patients. As we continue to prepare to care for our patients, remember to care for yourself-wear the PPE appropriately, remove the PPE appropriately as taught and you will have ‘safe practice, safe care’ . Ginnie
Here I am with ENA friends from Genesee Valley Chapter in not-so-sunny Indianapolis, waiting for General Assembly and Scientific Assembly to begin for 2014. This year conference is coincidently National ENA Week. What a great chance to celebrate ourselves with friends old and new and learn at the same time. To those who could not come this week, I wish you a Happy ENA Week, hope you have fun with whatever your facility has planned to honor your hard work and dedication and hope you can be in Orlando with us next year.
I am looking forward to The BOD meeting tomorrow as well as the town meeting which follows. ENA has made many changes this last year, some in response to issues raised at last GA, and some just because it was time. I wish more members could come to GA to watch our association in action, making changes to bylaws and enacting policy which reflects ENA values and ideas on subjects from prescription med abuse to standardization of emergency codes nationwide. We are back on the east coast in 2015, so begin planning and saving now to come. You will not be disappointed in the GA or in the educational offerings and fun things planned by the Foundation for our enjoyment. Ginnie