shocking yes and then some

  1. http://postgazette.com/forum/2001102...hrax1025p1.asp
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  2. 8 Comments

  3. by   oramar
    Does anyone care to comment on above link and how postal workers are ordered to continue to work in contaminated areas. At the same time Congress, Supreme Court and CIA not only don't enter their contaminated buildings but the also leave town. Oh well, same old same old, bosses every where are keen on ordering the troops into a hell they won't go near.
  4. by   essarge
    I have never understood why the government is so quick to protect their own and leave the rest of us out to hang. Seems kind of one sided and selfish doesn't it!!
  5. by   nur20
    AS a D.C. resident, i am outraged !!!!
  6. by   Mijourney
    Hi. I'll probably get ripped for this, but I'm going to look at the shutdowns from another perspective. I don't know about you, but I give more importance on receiving daily or regular services from the USPS then I do other parts of the government with the exception of fire, police, and rescue. The congress, supreme court, and even the CIA can operate in other places with similar equipment that they would use in their regular work place. If the entire USPS system were shut down, what impact would that have on our nation as a whole? They can't simply pick up and go to another place to operate because they would still have to contend with the contaminated mail?

    I believe what really has given me pause in the deaths of the postal workers is how our healthcare delivery system dealt with the second postal worker that sought help for s/s that many of us normally take for granted. On the basis of the small amount of information I've looked at, there seemed to be a break down of attention and communication in that case.

    I know that our public officials and we as health and medical professionals are going through a learning curve with bioterroism. But, the second case proves once and for all that it will no longer be sufficient for us to give minor attention to minor s/s. From now on we will have to put more time and effort into taking good comprehensive histories from our patients for optimal treatment. This means that we can justify the need for more staffing and resources to protect the public.
  7. by   oramar
    The fact that the mail comes to my house is the one reason I don't want it if there is any doubt about it's safety. They have not ruled out the possibility spores could travel on envelopes that merely came in contact with the contaminated mail. It is ludicrous once suspicion is aroused to do anything but shut the suspected facility down and do a complete exam and decontamination. Not to do so goes against everything infection control people believe As for the ER botching one of the cases, it is interesting that I just had this dialog with an ER physician. In the future I said, we would have to include certain question in our examinations of people with lung and skin infection. These questions should be: "do you work for the goverment or opens the mail for any large business , do you have contact with anyone that works for the goverment or opens mail for any large businesss?" If the answer is yes we may have to treat before we even get cultures. He told me I was reacting hysterically. Later the same day I witnessed a CDC spokes person on TV saying roughly the same thing. I think the poor ER people are pushed to just about their limits and anything that slows down the processing of patients anymore gave them fits. PS The CDC is going to have to speed up the way it gets info to ERs so that warnings get out quicker, I heard they were going to do just this. It is useless to tell people to go to ER for certain symptoms when the ERs are unaware of what is going on. The goverment is also going to have to stop cash starving ERs because it expects the ER to be the first line of defense during an attack against the general population.
    Last edit by oramar on Oct 27, '01
  8. by   Mijourney
    Yes oramar, I agree that I would not want to receive contaminated mail. But, for the sake of debate and discussion, if we were to shut down the USPS system, what do you think would happen to the economy not that that's more important than the people?

    I agree that the areas of the USPS in question warranted closer and speedier examination then they got. But, as you pointed out, anthrax spores may not travel just locally. So, what do we do if this anthrax ordeal gets out of hand and there's no mail delivery for most of the country? On one of the media I heard that the USPS will receive new equipment that have the capability of killing anthrax spores. What about protection from other forms of bioterroism that may come through the mail? Are we, John and Jane Q Public, going to have to devise our own mailrooms in or about our homes where we have masks, gloves, soap, water hoses, microwaves and so on? I heard one suggestion in the media that we deliver our bills directly to the source so that way we won't receive mail in that area. I admit I don't know the answer.

    I do strongly agree with you that we in the health and medical professions need information and we need it now. But, from now on, we do need to be more attentive when we are providing health and medical care. We shouldn't need for the CDC to tell us to be on the alert. As a group, we should have the knowledge and training to work alot of these situations out ourselves.

    Finally, as I pointed out toward the end of my post, and as you've implied in your post, we can justify the need for increased staffing levels and more resources to protect the public. In the area of health, medical care, and safety, the question is whether our leaders have the understanding and guts to put priority in perspective and divert funding and resources where they are most needed in this country.
  9. by   oramar
    I am watching the repeat showing of the Tuesday televised Congressional hearings on bioterrorism. They at least admit they have made mistakes and I am sure they are aware that people have died on kind of the mistakes. (they stop just short of admitting it.) They are not lining up to damn the ER that failed to properly treat the postal worker that died. They attribute it to the fact that information was not distruibuted to ERs quickly enough.
  10. by   Mijourney
    Yes oramar, that's probably the best course to take at this time. Since there were misadventures through and through because everyone is on a learning curve, it's best to settle the dust and not repeat the mistakes. Thanks for the update.

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