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The U.S. Health System Vs. Ebola47:08
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A second Dallas nurse infected with Ebola. At least 76 in her hospital, exposed. We’ll look at the American medical system racing for Ebola readiness.

In this Oct. 8, 2014 file photo, a sign points to the entrance to the emergency room at Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital Dallas, where U.S. Ebola patient Thomas Eric Duncan was being treated, in Dallas. (AP)
In this Oct. 8, 2014 file photo, a sign points to the entrance to the emergency room at Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital Dallas, where U.S. Ebola patient Thomas Eric Duncan was being treated, in Dallas. (AP)

If Ebola comes here, to the United States, it will be stopped in its tracks, we were told.  It will be toast.  But this week, we’ve got Ebola apparently, potentially, tracked all over the place.  A dead patient in Dallas.  Not one but two nurses who cared for him, infected.  Sick. One, flying commercial, with CDC sign-off, to Cleveland.  Those planes, hauling five more flights full of people around before they were grounded.  Schools now closed in Ohio where a staffer flew on that plane.  Stopped in its tracks?  This hour On Point:  the real state of American readiness.  Getting real about Ebola in the USA.
-- Tom Ashbrook

Guests

Lauren Silverman, health, science and technology reporter for KERA News. (@lsilverwoman)

Jonathan Cohn, senior editor for The New Republic. (@CitizenCohn)

Elaine Larsonassociate dean for research and the Anna C. Maxwell Professor of Nursing Research at Columbia University's School of Nursing.

Robyn Gershon, professor of epidemiology and biostatistics in the University of California, San Francisco School of Medicine's department of preventive medicine and public health. Also a professor in the UCSF School of Nursing.

From Tom's Reading List

The Wall Street Journal: Dallas Officials Warn More Ebola Cases Could Be Coming — "In addition to the two workers who have now tested positive for Ebola, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is monitoring 75 additional workers at the hospital who were also involved in the treatment of Mr. Duncan for potential Ebola exposure. The workers are in addition to 48 people who were already being monitored because they were in contact with Mr. Duncan, or with people who themselves had been in close contact with the Liberian man before he was admitted to the hospital Sept. 28."

The New Republic: You Shouldn't Worry About the New Ebola Case—But the CDC Should -- "Still, the new case confirms what officials at the U.S. Centers for Disease Control were already acknowledging on Tuesday. Expecting staff at a community hospital to handle these cases on their own, without a lot more training and guidance, was a mistake—one CDC officials say they will not make again."

Washington Post: U.S. hospitals not prepared for Ebola threat -- "Ebola is exposing a broader problem: the sober reality of our fragmented, uncoordinated private health-care system. We have enormous health-care resources in the United States. What we lack is a national, integrated system needed to respond effectively to a severe national threat such as Ebola."

This program aired on October 16, 2014.

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