I am absolutely fascinated with the US medical community’s response to the Ebola epidemic. The initial news of the 2014 outbreaks lacked a sense of urgency. First we were told no need to worry, Ebola is in Africa, and the medical community) can handle it. Then we were told that the US was prepared to handle Ebola if it should find its way to our shores.

Well, have you noticed the change in tone of the medical/healthcare/science community’s latest updates about Ebola? The swagger is still there, but language has changed. The medical community underestimated the disease and now admits it downplayed the issue of medical protocols.

The best response the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) can offer is that it will now “strengthen” the guidelines regarding the instruction and use of personal protective equipment. But what happened between then and now?

I listened to a nurse talk about the terror she felt when she reviewed videos which revealed basic breaches in medical protocol that compromised the safety of her peers. I am and was overwhelmed with anger and sadness. Could it be that the disease gained its momentum because of the lack of medical protocols?

I wish the CDC etc would also consider reviewing basic protocols like when healthcare personnel should wear their uniforms outside their places of work (i.e. hospitals, clinics etc.).

Don’t forget the reports about the infections and germs impede patient recoveries. And what about us everyday people? Restaurants have to post reminders for employees (cooks, waiters) as well as patrons, to wash hands after using the bathrooms.

I am not a doctor or scientist. I am just a person who is concerned about the health and well being of others.


Janet Cormier is a painter, writes prose and poetry, and performs comedy. JC prefers different and original over pretty. She loves collecting stuff, but cleaning not so much. Janet also talks to strangers… a lot. Her column appears weekly in Oddball Magazine.