We know what needs to be done. Last week, finally, the United States government organized the deployment of three thousand aid workers and began marshalling a wider international response. Inside our borders, the C.D.C. has fostered a cadre of thousands of public-health professionals at the local, state, and federal levels who are ready to respond and who have proved to be reliable and effective at getting this kind of work done. And, with the announcement of the Dallas case, hospitals across the country are now scrambling to get their procedures in place. Doctors’ offices should do so, too. They need to download the C.D.C.’s checklists. And they need to do what other high-risk professions have done for years and train people immediately in “closed-loop communication”—confirming verbally that critical information has been received and understood.
The diagnosis of the first U.S. case is not the sign that we need to shut patients out. It’s the sign that we need to bring more help in. The Ebola epidemic is stoppable.
—Atul Gawande. Read the whole thing.