The Cleveland Department of Public Health and the Cuyahoga County Board of Health continued their series of joint press conferences on October 20, 2014, designed to update the public on the response to the Ebola incident in Northeast Ohio. Director Toinette Parrilla spoke on the on-going efforts between the Joint Incident Command and Cleveland area hospitals to prepare for a confirmed case of Ebola, if needed. There are NO current cases of Ebola in Northeast Ohio.
“We have evaluated and will continue to evaluate our area hospitals and health care system’s capacity to respond to a positive Ebola incident in Northeast Ohio if one were to occur,” said Director Parrilla.
“I feel confident in our region’s healthcare system after evaluating key aspects of readiness, including personal protective equipment (PPE), decontamination procedures, transportation protocol, and proper procedure for disposal of biohazard waste.”
Cuyahoga County Board of Health spokesman Kevin Brennan gave an overview of current monitoring efforts now underway in the State and County. “Currently, the State is monitoring 142 contacts of Ms. Vinson, all of which are healthy,” said Brennan. “32 of those contacts are in Cuyahoga County and 21 of the 142 are in the City of Cleveland.” “There are no cases of Ebola in Northeast Ohio and we do not have any indication to suspect otherwise.”
Assistant Director of Public Safety Ed Eckart spoke last and provided an update on coordinated efforts between local and county-wide emergency responders. “This week we will continue to meet with our fire and police partners throughout the county in order to share information and best practices,” said Eckart.
“In addition, our recently implemented protocol for 9-1-1 dispatchers, designed to detect a potential Ebola diagnosis, has been received positively by the community and public safety forces alike.”
The Emergency Operation Center and Joint Information Center of City the of Cleveland and Cuyahoga County Board of Health is still operational and will continue to provide updates.
Local Northeast Ohio residents and visitors are encouraged to dial 2-1-1 twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week, with general questions on the Ebola virus or contact the CDC for general information about Ebola at (800) CDC-INFO