N: Nurses, doctors and respect for science

Nurses: nurses and doctors are on the front line in this battle with Ebola so we should listen to them when they talk about treatment and policy. Doctors Without Borders (DWB) and The World Health Organization (WHO) have been dealing with this virus for years and have learned more than the media and politicians have in in just a few weeks. A nurse who has been directly handling the ill, dying and dead proved she is not afraid to stand up to the governors of New York and New Jersey. She has science and experience on her side. One possible positive outcome of the Ebola situation is that more people will recognize science does not take sides in a political battle. Refreshing, at least we can hope.

Nurses leave for work each day aware the unknown is waiting on their shift. The nurses in Dallas did not know they would face Ebola a month ago. Some of those nurses talked on 60 Minutes a few days ago. Each of them volunteered to work with America’s first patient, two of their friends got sick and recovered. Along the way they the public and health organizations learned on the job. The doctors and nurses who have volunteered to fly to West Africa to help the people most in need know what they are facing and what precautions are necessary.

Naturally politicians are tripping over themselves to wrap their arms around the problem. Image trumped science and prudence as the election nears. As the list of states imposing quarantines grows and the CDC and NIH update their recommendations we are in a state of flux. Bit it will get better.

The nurses who actually treated the patient in Dallas focused on the patient. They said the protective protocol and clothing got better as time went on.

Like the sign said, “If you are alive, thank a nurse.”


2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. heyannis
    Oct 28, 2014 @ 19:07:33

    Nurses have my utmost respect. Some of my favorite people — relatives, friends, and former students — are nurses. Thanks for this thoughtful post, Terry. xoA



  2. Joan Lindsay Kerr
    Nov 03, 2014 @ 21:40:57

    My mom was a nurse. God bless them all!



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