St. Luke's preps for an unlikely Ebola outbreak in Idaho.
Experts say an outbreak of Ebola in the United States is unlikely—and doctors say it's even more unlikely that the virus could make its way to Idaho. But it's not impossible.
So St. Luke's Health System
is preparing for the remote chance through staff training, establishing protocols and equipment preparation, according to KTVB
The training includes establishing what questions to ask patients and what to do in a quarantine situation. They've created a buddy system for their HAZMAT suits, to make sure the suits are worn properly and have no holes or tears. St. Luke's has a network of clinics, but the training is reaching them all.
The health care provider has already spent $300,000 on supplies that would combat a potential Ebola outbreak here—including gowns, masks and powered ventilation goods. Even more money has gone into training.
"We feel we are ready," Chief Quality Officer Dr. Barton Hill told KTVB. "We are continually getting additional areas identified. There is a whole continuum of steps that need to be in place. Points of access can include clinics, people who come to the front desk of a hospital, or people who come to an emergency department. There are over 125 clinics across the various St. Luke's sites so you can imagine there is a tremendous amount of work to get those people up to speed and ready to go."