Tags: Ebola Outbreak | charles schumer | military | quick | response | plan

Charles Schumer: Military Ebola Response Plan Not Good Enough

By    |   Monday, 20 Oct 2014 06:54 PM

The U.S. military's plan for a quick-response strike team to respond to reported infections of the deadly Ebola virus within 72 hours just isn't good enough for New Yorkers, according to Sen. Charles Schumer.

The New York Post reports that Schumer is demanding that the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) base a team on the ground in New York to instantly handle passengers from the infected countries of Sierra Leone, Liberia and Guinea at airports in New York and New Jersey.

"We’re also asking, while that team is on the ground here, that they go around and do the same thing our city and state health departments are doing— go inspect the hospitals to make sure that they have everything in place," the New York Republican told the Post.

"If someone is tested positively for Ebola, they'll be in the isolation room in the hospital where they found it. Then, immediately, the CDC team could come in and transport them to one of the four centers (in Maryland, Atlanta, Nebraska and Montana) where they know how to treat them," the Post reported.

He told AM New York, "We're asking that the CDC have a team on the ground, not that they fly somebody in the minute someone is diagnosed with Ebola, so that they'd be right here. The worst thing that can happen is somebody walking around New York or any other city with Ebola having not been detected at our airports," he said.

It's not the first time Schumer has urged health officials to get tougher on Ebola. Earlier this month, in a letter to Customs and Border Protection (CBP) Commissioner Gil Kerlikowske and CDC Director Tom Frieden, Schumer urged that CBP agents be trained to screen passengers for Ebola and that the government develop a tracking database on all visitors from the affected countries, which could be accessed quickly, should an Ebola patient be identified.

"I ask that CDC work with the CBP in major U.S. ports of entry to increase the monitoring and identification of people arriving from the affected countries both by plane and by cargo ship," Schumer wrote, Roll Call reported.

Forbes reported that the Department of Defense is assembling a 30-person "strike team" to respond within 72 hours to Ebola cases anywhere in the US. The team will consist of five doctors, 20 critical care nurses and five infectious disease protocol trainers.

Rear Adm. John Kirby said the team is being trained and deployed "as an added prudent measure to ensure our nation is ready to respond quickly, effectively, and safely in the event of additional Ebola cases in the United States."

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The U.S. military's plan for a quick-response strike team to respond to reported infections of the deadly Ebola virus within 72 hours just isn't good enough for New Yorkers, according to Sen. Charles Schumer.
charles schumer, military, quick, response, plan
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2014-54-20
Monday, 20 Oct 2014 06:54 PM
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