Registed Nurses' Association of Ontario

The Registered Nurses' Association of Ontario (RNAO) is calling for a provincial plan to deal with the potential threat of Ebola

The Registered Nurses' Association of Ontario (RNAO) is calling for a provincial plan to deal with the potential threat of Ebola

2014-10-15

TORONTO, Oct. 15, 2014 - RNAO is calling for a provincial strategy by the end of this week when it comes to coping with the potential threat of Ebola, which is a deadly virus.

This call for a co-ordinated strategy includes: setting protocols around screening, movement of patients, personal protective measures and equipment, education and training -- including drills and an individual whose role is dedicated to overseeing the donning and removal of personal protective suits. This also includes: ensuring hospitals' chief nurse executives and public health units' chief nurse officers are fully involved in the planning and delivery of protocol measures, and routine teleconferences between all key health-care stakeholder organizations and the Ministry of Health.

The call for action stems from the SARS outbreak over a decade ago, which caught the health system and many providers off-guard. The association says the province needs to be ready to treat patients with Ebola who could show up at hospitals, primary care clinics, walk-in clinics and long-term care homes.

RNAO's CEO Doris Grinspun says she has spoken with nurses at two Ontario hospitals with suspected cases of Ebola. Grinspun learned these nurses had received no instructions or education in dealing with the virus. RNAO is adamant that this must change immediately.

Grinspun spoke with Minister of Health Dr. Eric Hoskins and is confident he heard RNAO's concerns. The Minister has promised swift action.

The Registered Nurses’ Association of Ontario (RNAO) is the professional association representing registered nurses, nurse practitioners and nursing students in Ontario. Since 1925, RNAO has advocated for healthy public policy, promoted excellence in nursing practice, increased nurses’ contribution to shaping the health-care system, and influenced decisions that affect nurses and the public they serve.

For more information about RNAO, visit our website at www.RNAO.ca. You can also check out our Facebook page at http://www.RNAO.org/facebook and follow us on Twitter at www.twitter.com/RNAO