An alleged Ebola outbreak in a small senior community in Dallas, Texas recently alerted the authorities and the media. Apparently, two members of the staff were guaranteed and suspected to have caught the virus. Rumor has it that the two caregivers got in contact with a Liberian man who was diagnosed with Ebola; he died this past October. Ever since his death, the nurses who attended him at the Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital caught the diseases as well.
The Windsor Senior Living explained in a letter to employees and residents that the situation is under control, and that the people have nothing to worry about. Staff members of the hospital and community residents are NOT as risk of getting infected with Ebola from the two nurses who were quarantined. Even though they’re being supervised, they haven’t had any symptoms. Nevertheless, CDC protocol says that for safety measures, they must be kept in quarantine for a period of 21 days.
Seniors are scared that the virus is spreading in assisted living facilities
It’s only natural for seniors to believe that the Ebola virus will reach nursing homes and assisted living communities considering that the people currently under quarantine operate in the medical field. Since older adults have weaker immune systems, they might get in contact with each other patient’s body fluids. A nursing home could be a breeding ground for the disease to develop, however the chances are very slim.
The CDC (Center for Disease Control) noted that caregivers who care for patients with Ebola are at risk of contracting the disease because they might come in contact with the patients’ fluids and blood. In case of an outbreak, the diseases has chances of spreading quickly among the healthcare setting. The CDC doesn’t mention that there’s an outbreak right now, as they’re only trying to keep the population warned. Unfortunately, people are highly influenced by social media, and it’s nearly impossible to convince them that the healthcare system has NOT been infected with Ebola.
Seniors have no reason to worry
Ebola is a dreadful disease, we can’t argue about that. However, it can’t penetrate the medical environment if hospitals and palliative care facilities take proper precaution measures. Both Europe and the US are concerned that the disease with trigger an outbreak. A new study issued by the Harvard School of Public Health, highlights that over 52% of adults think an epidemic will emerge within a year. Regrettably, due to the massive media attention on the topic, there are certain clear misconceptions regarding Ebola.
- You won’t get Ebola if someone sneezes at you – Ebola is not a disease that spreads through air, food or water. According to the Center for Disease Control, Ebola is spread only through direct body contact (broken mucous membranes in the mouth, nose, and eyes or through broken skin tissue) with an infected patient’s body fluids (urine, sweat, vomit, semen, saliva, etc.) and blood. In the medical field, extra care is required because physicians and nurses deal with syringes, bleeding clothes and needs all the time.
- Patients who suffer from Ebola are infectious only when they exhibit the symptoms. Although there are chances for a healthy person to get Ebola from a sneeze, that’s highly unlikely since there’s little chance for you to approach that person with broken skin, cuts, and similar afflictions.
Even though the risk of Ebola adds yet another disease on the list of deadly diseases, basic hygiene like periodic hand washing and using sanitizing items (gloves and face masks) when dealing with an infected patient will keep the caregiver safe and sound.
Seniors have nothing to worry about, as Ebola is not spreading to hospitals any time soon. The disease is something we should worry about, but it’s not always a good idea to believe the media’s allegations. The problem is the mass media has taken care of scaring the whole population. Rumors can do a lot of harm, especially when journalists make a big deal out of something small. There was a patient suffering from Ebola in Dallas, Texas, and the two nurses are currently under quarantine. However, this doesn’t mean they’re sick too, and it certainly doesn’t imply that the whole medical system has been compromised.