Ebola and Michigan's Preparedness from MDCH > Michigan State Medical Society

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Ebola and Michigan's Preparedness from MDCH

While there is no current threat to Michigan, and we hope Ebola does not come to our state, we know that coordination and communication are the keys to preparedness. As the Michigan Department of Community Health works to be vigilant against any threat this virus, and other infectious diseases, may pose to our state and its citizens, communication to our members is key to Michigan's response.

According to a news release, the top priority of Governor Snyder and the Michigan Department of Community Health is to safeguard the health and safety of Michigan residents, including the healthcare professionals who care for them. It is paramount that we protect those who put their own safety on the line by caring for those who are infected.

In doing so, Michigan is actively monitoring individuals for 21 days following departure from affected areas. Currently, there are five individuals being actively monitored twice daily for temperature and symptoms, and an additional nine have already completed the monitoring cycle. So far, all of these individuals have been low-risk with no known exposure to Ebola and no symptoms. This will allow us to quickly evaluate any symptoms which may be indicative of Ebola or a variety of other illnesses such as the common cold or the flu, so that we can respond swiftly and ensure the health and safety of those involved.

MDCH has been meeting with their healthcare partners, including front-line workers, to assess their ability to respond in the event of a case of Ebola in Michigan, and to learn directly from them about the preparedness efforts in their facilities. During these meetings, they are working to ensure that proper information and training is available to healthcare professionals, including knowledge about the use of personal protective equipment (PPE), and ways in which they can support their efforts.

MDCH and its Office of Public Health Preparedness have had emergency response plans in place for more than a decade, as well as well-established and effective surveillance and communication processes. Further, their state laboratory is one of only 14 laboratories in the nation with the capabilities to complete testing of suspected Ebola cases. Having these resources greatly increases Michigan’s ability to respond quickly and accurately.

MDCH knows our members are vital partners in their preparedness efforts. With the resources available in Michigan, as well as the coordination which has been taking place, MDCH is available to assist and ready to respond in the event of a case of Ebola in our state.

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