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Wednesday, April 17, 2019

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LOSGH, other agencies conduct Ebola preparedness drill

LOSGH, other agencies conduct Ebola preparedness drill

Lady of the Sea General Hospital, in conjunction with Lafourche Ambulance District 1 and the Hospital Designated Regional Coordinator from Health and Human Services conducted an Ebola Virus Disease drill to test the competency and readiness of the hospital and its staff if faced with a possible, and threatening EVD case in the South Lafourche community.

Last Thursday, October 16th, the drill began with a scripted call through the 9-1-1 system from a patient reporting possible (hypothetic) EVD symptoms. The 9-1-1 representative asked the caller the EVD protocol screening questions then dispatched an ambulance for transport to Lady of the Sea General Hospital. Upon arrival at the emergency room entrance, the staff at Lady of the Sea worked with LAD1 staff to transfer the patient into the ER isolation area while limiting exposure to any other patients, family members and staff on site. The drill wrapped up with the patient being moved onto the MedSurg unit in an isolation room.

The drill included physician staff, nursing staff, and ancillary staff from lab, radiology and cardiopulmonary, as well as environmental services. “This was the most inclusive drill I’ve seen to date on Ebola,” said Kim Beetz, LEM with HHS Region 3 Hospitals.

“The purpose of the drill was for us to have the opportunity to walk through our policy and processes and look for ways to improve prior to actually having a patient on-site. This drill showed our strengths as well as our weaknesses. I feel much more prepared and informed on how to protect our patients, community and staff members,” said Brady Daigle, Operations Manager at Lafourche Ambulance District #1.

Helene Melancon, RN, BSN, CIC, a certified infection control nurse at Lady of the Sea General Hospital was in charge of planning and executing the drill. She coordinated the activity through administration while keeping a close eye on how the current EVD cases in our country are continuing to unfold.

“We believe the best way to identify and correct any procedure deficiency was to organize a walk-through of our processes. We invited LAD to participate with us and they quickly agreed. This was an eye-opening experience for our staff members. Our staff takes their responsibility of providing high-quality healthcare to our patients seriously, no matter what their diagnosis.

Our staff wants to be informed, trained and prepared to handle any situation, including public health threats. We believe we are preparing ourselves each day with the latest information from the CDC to make sure our employees are informed.”

For more information and photos from our EVD drill, please visit