OSHA Releases Ebola Webpage, FYI


OSHA ebola guidlinesThere are increasing concerns related to the Ebola virus.  To keep everyone informed, OSHA has released a new webpage on Ebola, that provides information about the disease and how to protect workers. 

 

 

 

 

Topics covered on the site:

 

  •  Background on the disease itself
  •  Hazard recognition
  •  Medical information
  •  Standards for protection workers
  •  Control and prevention
  •  New OSHA fact sheet on protecting workers (not in healthcare or laboratories) involved in cleaning and decontamination of surfaces. Click here to view the OSHA Fact Sheet

Protection information for health care workers; airline and other travel industry personnel; sectors and so much more. 

 

It also links to the CDC and NIOSH web pages on Ebola.

 

Educate yourself to keep a safe and healthy work environment.

 

Click here to view the OSHA Ebola page

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Dallas sheriff’s officers entered ebola quarantined apartment


Tanya Eiserer, WFAA October 2, 2014

DALLAS — Five members of the Dallas County Sheriff’s Department who were briefly inside the apartment where a man with Ebola stayed have been temporarily put on leave.‎

“They’re very concerned,” said Christopher Dyer, president of the Dallas County Sheriff’s Association. ‎”Their families are concerned. You’ve got to go home and tell your spouse, ‘Hey, I was just inside this house where a guy had Ebola.’”

The three deputies, a sergeant, and a lieutenant accompanied the head of Dallas County Health and Human Services Department and a doctor into the apartment late Wednesday night. They had gone there on the orders of Sheriff Lupe Valdez to get the people inside to sign a court order forbidding them from leaving the apartment.

Dyer said deputies should never have been involved to begin with, because he considers it a federal issue and not a local matter.

“My anger is really with the feds,” he said. “Let’s move that family. Let’s move everybody out of that building. I don’t care if it’s overkill. Let’s do overkill. I don’t think sending a few deputies in there is the right course of action.‎”

What really raised everyone’s concern was when the order came down Thursday morning that the squad cars the deputies were in Wednesday were being taken out of service, Dyer said. Those cars are reportedly being cleaned.

Dyer said deputies – both those that went inside and those that didn’t – were told to bag up their uniforms and boots and turn them in. He said he contacted Valdez’s second in command, asking that the deputies be put on leave and be evaluated by medical staff.

The CDC has reiterated several times this week that being near someone who has contracted the Ebola virus doesn’t mean that you’ll get infected. The disease isn’t contagious in the same ways as the flu or common cold. You have to be in contact with a patient’s body fluids or blood, and you have to have a break in your skin or have the fluids touch your eyes, mouth, or nose to contract the virus.

According to the Dallas County Sheriff’s Association president, the plan for now is that a representative with the CDC is going to speak with the deputies and their families to help allay their concerns.

“My concern is for the deputies and their families, and I want to see Dallas County do everything that they can to alleviate their concerns,” Dyer said.

The deputies are expected to ‎return to work in a few days, Dyer said.

Carmen Castro, a sheriff’s department spokeswoman, responded via email about the squad cars.

“There is no contamination,” she wrote. “We are being cautious so our guys are more comfortable.‎”

She did not respond to followup questions about the deputies being put on leave.

Dyer was one of the deputies on scene Wednesday night, but he did not go inside. He said the family of the Ebola victim told the deputies that went inside that they were running out of food.

“What kind of planning is that for the feds?” Dyer said. “You quarantine them, but you’re not going to make sure they have food?”

Dyer said one of the supervisors got sandwiches and drinks for the family from a police prostitution diversion initiative that was going on nearby. His understanding is that food has since been delivered to the family.

Deputies are currently stationed outside the family’s apartment to ensure that they don’t leave.

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