Ebola by Crtomir Podlipnik

By Crtomir Podlipnik

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With the involvement of the hospital management and the IPC team, we engaged an external contractor to work on WASH infrastructure and this was monitored and evaluated by KSLP, the ERC, MOHS and the President’s office with regular updates given to Connaught senior management. In order to ensure longevity, new fixtures and fittings were procured internationally. The IPC team was keen to ensure that the fixtures would be properly maintained as they could not be easily replaced. KSLP management and the IPC team liaised with Connaught management and together we gave responsibility to the heads of each clinical department for the new fixtures and fittings in their area and ensured that they worked with the IPC team and regularly monitored WASH facilities.

37 38 Ebola Internal audits of tuberculosis and HIV services showed a limited reduction in number of attendances of existing and new suspect cases, and medical inpatient numbers decreased by up to half during the early outbreak [23]. Surgical cases, sadly influenced by the death of two hospital surgical staff including the country’s only trauma surgeon, dramatically dropped in August 2014, and fell to 3% of expected activity [24]. This was on a background of existing shortages in “all aspects of infrastructure, personnel, and supplies required for delivering surgical care in Sierra Leone” [25].

This was prepared jointly by international volunteers and a range of hospital staff including nurses, doctors and maintenance staff. All initial equipment was purchased locally. g. non touch clinical waste bins. Several features made the identified space useful to create the EHU—it was adjacent to the triage area at the front of the hospital, so any patients identified at being at risk of EVD were easily transported into the unit. There were no steps, separate entrance and exits (though the later had to be constructed) with the capacity for unidirectional flow, and was a physical building that withstood the rigors of repeated cleaning, allowed for security, and ventilation for patients.

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