I work in a major hospital in a large city. It has occured to me that in the case of biological weapons we are anything but prepared. I watched a news special recently reassuring Americans that everything is being done to protect us. Where? How? Has anyone seen or heard of anything being done in their hospitals? Several months ago all staff received a questionare asking if we would use personal hoods with hepa capabilities. Were we claustrophobic? Could we work in hot confined spaces? I have yet to see these hoods. The whole questionaire sounded funny to me considering our hospital just spent close to 1 million $ installing 6 new state of the art isolation rooms on our unit. All of this was several months ago. As of yet our high tech iso rooms have been used for VRE and MRSA. I just feel completely unprepared for any biological warfare that may come along. We haven't been told what to watch for or what we should do in a situation like that. Being the biggest hospital on the west coast what does this say about other, smaller hospitals. I would appreciate any comments from nurses who HAVE had some preparation. God bless us all.
Oct 15, '01
Hi cannie. I think that this is an appropriate topic to discuss, because most health care workers, including me, have no experience with the type of infectious diseases that can be used for bioterroism. However, I wonder if the lack of responses to posts such as this (I posted something along similar lines) is indicative that some posters are concerned about unwittingly divulging information that could be used against us.
Even if we're not able to carry on a discussion or debate regarding antiterroist measures by health care workers, I feel that nurses should be one of the main groups on the forefront of planning in managing a biological terroist attack. So far, the only experts I've seen in the media discussing the topic are physicians and a few nonclinical public health officials.
I think NursKaren has posted some bioterroism sites, so perhaps you and I can refer to those for some information.