EBOLA is back in Africa. Is ZIKA next? Are we prepared?

Lesson Learned from recent EBOLA and ZIKA episodes. We need to designate REGIONAL EMERGING VIRUSES REFERRAL CENTERS (REVRCs).

1. There should not be an automatic default to just designating Ebola Centers as REVRCs although there is likely to be significant overlap.

2. REVRCs should be academic medical centers with respected, comprehensive infectious disease diagnostic/ treatment and research capabilities, and rigorous infection control programs. They should also offer robust, comprehensive perinatology, neonatology, and pediatric neurology services, with the most sophisticated imaging capabilities (and emerging viruses “reading” expertise).

3. National leadership in clinical trials.

4. A track record of successful, large scale clinical Rapid Response.

5. Organizational wherewithal to address intensive resource absorption.

REVRC protocols will be templates for are other mosquito borne diseases lurking on the horizon, such as Chikungunya, MERS, and Dengue.

Fast forward to this weekend:  “There have been 17 suspected cases and two confirmed cases of Ebola in Congo’s Bas-Uele province,…. Of the 19, three deaths have been reported. …. health officials were trying to located 125 people believed to be linked to the cases.” (A)

What are we waiting for? DESIGNATE REVRCs NOW!


(A)   EBOLA RETURNS: WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT THE OUTBREAK IN CONGO, by BY CONOR GAFFEY, Newsweek, http://www.newsweek.com/democratic-republic-congo-ebola-609143


Background posts:

EMERGENCY ROOMS are not all created equal!   https://doctordidyouwashyourhands.com/2016/04/emergency-rooms-are-not-all-created-equal/

We don’t know what we don’t know”  https://doctordidyouwashyourhands.com/2016/04/we-dont-know-what-we-dont-know-about-zika-1-the-challenge-to-emergency-preparedness/

Former hospital prez says: Designate local Zika centers now.   https://doctordidyouwashyourhands.com/2016/06/former-hospital-prez-says-designate-local-zika-centers-now-medical-experts-do-not-know-if-or-where-or-how-much-or-on-what-trajectory-the-zika-virus-may-spread-across-the-united-states/

 “I got Zika. The US health care system had no idea what to do with me…”  https://doctordidyouwashyourhands.com/2016/08/i-got-zika-the-us-health-care-system-had-no-idea-what-to-do-with-me/

 “With little known about Zika virus, hospitals scramble to stay ahead.”  https://doctordidyouwashyourhands.com/2016/08/with-little-known-about-zika-virus-hospitals-scramble-to-stay-ahead/

Hospitals are developing their own Zika preparedness models. Compare the Central Florida and Johns Hopkins approaches! Which template makes more sense?    https://doctordidyouwashyourhands.com/2016/09/hospitals-are-developing-their-own-zika-preparedness-models-compare-the-central-florida-and-johns-hopkins-approaches-which-template-makes-more-sense/