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DC-based Hospitals Among 35 Nationally Recognized Treatment Centers Ready to Handle Ebola

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Today, the DC Department of Health (DOH) reaffirms its commitment to preparing for potential cases of Ebola Virus Disease by announcing the first tier of acute care hospitals ready to address Ebola in the District of Columbia. DOH, with the support of the US Department of Health and Human Services, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has identified Children’s National Medical Center, Medstar Washington Hospital Center and George Washington University Hospital as the first group of nationally recognized Ebola preparedness hospitals in the District of Columbia. The CDC and DOH have visited, evaluated and determined these facilities capable of providing extensive clinical treatment. 

DOH, in partnership with all area hospitals and the District of Columbia Hospital Association (DCHA) continues to set the standard for public health response to emerging infectious diseases.

“Over the past six months, we have been focused on developing a strategy that will allow us to efficiently identify, monitor and treat potential Ebola cases identified in the District of Columbia. Through collaboration with federal and local partners including the CDC and DCHA, we have created a unique standard, as well as an optimal system for preparing the city for Ebola or any other emerging public health threat,” said DOH Director, Dr. Joxel Garcia. “I strongly believe we have the best public health system in the nation and we will be ready if and when the time comes to address this public health concern.”

The District of Columbia has developed a three tiered approach to hospital readiness. First tier of acute care hospitals are capable of identifying, isolating and treating patients infected with the Ebola Virus. The second tier will have the same capabilities and will serve as overflow should the tier one institutions be at capacity at the time of need. Tier three institutions will be capable of evaluating and isolating patients at risk for Ebola, and be able to stabilize these patients for transfer to a higher tier facility.

“To be identified as a designated site in Washington, D.C. is an honor and recognition of the tremendous work we do every day,” said Barry Wolfman, chief executive officer and managing director of GW Hospital. “If called upon, we are ready to provide outstanding care of the highest quality. That’s what our record shows we do and what people in this region and our country expect from GW Hospital.”

Moving forward, DOH will continue to work with community based organizations, local health care facilities, fellow District agencies and all District hospitals on Ebola preparedness.

For more information on Ebola, please visit ebola.dc.gov.