Part of a network of 10 regional facilities expanding U.S. ability to respond to outbreaks of severe, highly infectious diseases
Washington, DC–(ENEWSPF)–June 14, 2016. Putting in place the final piece of a regional network to treat patients infected with severe, highly infectious diseases, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has selected a health department and associated partner hospital to serve the region covering Arizona, California, Hawaii, Nevada and the Pacific island territories and freely associated states. Following today’s selection, there now is a regional Ebola and other special pathogen treatment center designated for each of HHS’s 10 regions nationwide.
The California Department of Public Health, in partnership with Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles, has been selected as the regional treatment center covering the final region.
“With all of the regional facilities in place, our nation’s healthcare infrastructure will be better prepared for future outbreaks of Ebola and other special pathogens, especially those requiring a high level of biocontainment and specialized infection control,” said Dr. Nicole Lurie, HHS assistant secretary for preparedness and response (ASPR). “This regional network of facilities capable of treating severe, highly infectious diseases is vital to better ensuring our nation’s health security.”
The awardee will receive approximately $3.25 million through FY 2019 to enhance and sustain the regional treatment center’s capabilities to care for patients with Ebola or other highly infectious diseases. As a regional Ebola and other special pathogen treatment center, the facility continually will be ready and available to care for a patient with Ebola or another severe, highly infectious disease, whether the patient is transported from in or out of the United States.
In addition, the facility must:
- Accept patients within eight hours of being notified,
- Have the capacity to treat at least two patients simultaneously,
- Have respiratory infectious disease isolation capacity or negative pressure rooms for at least 10 patients,
- Conduct quarterly trainings and exercises,
- Receive an annual readiness assessment from the National Ebola Training and Education Center,
- Be able to treat children. and,
- Be able to safely handle infectious waste.
The 10 regional facilities are part of a national network of Ebola treatment centers and assessment hospitals, but have enhanced capabilities to treat a patient with confirmed Ebola or other highly infectious disease. The remaining Ebola treatment centers and their associated health departments remain prepared to handle patients.
Funding to establish the regional treatment centers is part of an emergency Congressional appropriation to enhance state and local public health and health care system preparedness. The project stems from the 2014 Ebola epidemic in West Africa.
The Cedars-Sinai facility was selected based upon extensive criteria published in a funding opportunity announcement released in February 2015.
HHS is the principal federal department for protecting the health of all Americans and providing essential human services, especially for those who are least able to help themselves. ASPR leads HHS in preparing the nation to respond to and recover from adverse health effects of emergencies, supporting communities’ ability to withstand adversity, strengthening health and response systems, and enhancing national health security.
To learn more about the department’s efforts to protect against Ebola, visit www.cdc.gov/Ebola and for more information on the Department’s emergency preparedness and response efforts for all hazards see www.phe.gov.