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Hearing Monday to discuss state’s protocols for handling Ebola

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Courtesy of American Medical Response

HARTFORD — Ebola is still a concern for local lawmakers.

Many will gather for a hearing Monday to learn more about the state’s protocols for handling future cases.

The legislature’s Public Health Committee wants to know whether they are any flaws in the current policies aimed at handling Ebola cases, and if there are, what can they do to fix them.

The committee will gather information from the Department of Public Health, the Connecticut Hospital Association and other agencies.

Once members gain enough insight into the state’s protocols for handling the deadly virus, they’ll determine what more needs to be done.

Currently the state has taken several steps toward protecting people.

In October, Gov. Malloy declared a public health emergency and signed an executive order giving the state’s public health commissioner the ability to quarantine people who may have been exposed to or infected with Ebola.

The Governor also ordered all hospitals to perform drills to ensure that everyone on staff is prepared to handle a potential Ebola infected patient.

Already a couple of local hospitals have been put to the test when individuals thought to be infected with the virus were admitted.

The more recent case happened Saturday night at Griffin Hospital in Derby.

An adult male who have recently traveled to Liberia was brought in by ambulance with a condition not symptomatically related to Ebola but due to the fact he had traveled to a country stricken with the virus the hospital enacted their Ebola response plan.

The patient was tested and does not have Ebola but he is still currently staying at the hospital, according to a hospital spokesman. All caregivers who treated him are checking their temperature twice a day as a precautionary measure.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention there have been nearly 16,000 Ebola cases and 5,689 deaths.

When the Public Health Committee meets Monday, if members determine more needs to be done to ensure the safety of individuals, they will look into passing new legislation when lawmakers convene in January.

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