Screening Employees For Ebola


From original questioner:

Dear colleagues.

I am the manager of the health and safety committee for an architectural milwork firm.

With an Ebola case being discovered in the USA, in the same city as my mill work companies facility, I have been tasked to implement a contingency plan to screen our workers for Symptoms of the Ebola Virus, and minimize the risk of workplace transmission.

This is especially of concern for our firm, as many of our employees have relatives that travel to West African countries, and in some cases they themselves have traveled to effected regions.

I feel this is over-kill and likely an over-reaction on the part of my employer, but I am just trying to do my job.

Without much medical extertise I am not really sure how to approach this, despite being assigned the task. Any advice would be greatly appreciated.

From contributor ja

Obviously as a nation this is very New to Us. those of Us who have lived Abroad know first hand the kind of damage this causes. On of my daily prayers is for Us as a Nation to stop the infighting and open our eyes to the reality of the world at large.

I would think watching the OSHA and CDC websites will be helpful. We spent years as a culture Ignoring AIDS Hope fully we will not stick our heads in the sand on this.

From contributor Ca

I wonder what the implications of this disease are for universal healthcare.

The lack of healthcare infrastructure in West Africa has contributed greatly to this plague. People who don't have healthcare typically don't have much money. Ebola will start first with this population and then spread to the community at large.

Meanwhile the Mitch McConnells of the world will do everything they can to defeat Obamacare. How smart is that?

From contributor ja

Who woulda ever thought OB care might just come in handy !!

From contributor Ca

The (first) Texan who was diagnosed with Ebola was sent home by the hospital. He continued to expose those around him for two more days before they would admit him.

This could have been because the hospital didn't recognize the symptoms or it could have been because medical resources were scarce and they needed to ration them. In any case this will not be the only infection. There will be a lot of people who don't get their symptoms checked out because they can't afford to.

From contributor Ji

I would contact the CDC and health department and hospitals for information concerning transmission of the disease and other factors of ebola.

Then prepare a pamphlet or get one from the agencies that discusses ebola. Have small group meetings with people so everyone becomes aware of what it is, how to not get it and the symptoms if they do.

Because you have personnel that are from and travel to the affected region, I think that this is a good idea to be ahead of the game. Not behind it like with AIDs.

From contributor Gl

It has been against the law to refuse care at any hospital in this country for years so what the heck does Obamacare have to do with anything?

From contributor ca


A lot of people try not to go to the doctor if they have a sniffle. If they can't afford the walk in clinics they roll the dice and hope the symptoms will go away.

You are right that the emergency rooms and hospitals can't refuse care to anybody. So after you've infected your family, friends, neighbors and mailman and have no other choice we can make sure you get the care you need.

This approach worked real well in West Africa. Somehow just knowing we are in Governor Rick Perry's prayers makes it all better.

From contributor Gl

OK, we all know you are a liberal hack so drop the politics and go hug your Obama poster. When my first employee gets ebola I will start to take notice.

From contributor Da

An Ebola outbreak in the US could be the one thing that exposes the tragic flaw in the 'Health Care For Profit" logic that all US healthcare has now become. "How much will you pay to live?" will never be so acute as with an epidemic like Ebola.

While it is true that 'hospitals cannot refuse anyone', the practice is to humiliate, belittle, delay and try to deny care to those that that have no insurance. That makes for a sizable percentage of the US that will become the target for the disease. This population will (unintentionally) harbor it, making it impossible to eradicate. Unless that population is eradicated either by attrition or by access to health care.

From contributor ca


That's a very enlightened perspective you have. By the time your employee gets ebola your wife, kids and neighbor will have it too.

Public health is a completely different animal than dogma. You might want to recalibrate on this one.

From contributor Gl

I am a registered independent and I think liberals and conservatives are both narrow minded people. I also think you are all hysterical and over reacting from watching too many movies. We have an absolutely fantastic healthcare system and everyone including illegals will get the best of care here.

From contributor ca


A pandemic does not care if you are an independent thinker, registered or otherwise. It does not care if you are republican or democrat, liberal or conservative. A pandemic is the great equalizer.

This is an issue that we need to get out in front of. There may be some groups in our country that are reluctant to come forward to avail themselves of this wonderful healthcare you say we have.

They may be reluctant, for example, if they live in Arizona. If they think getting a symptom checked out could result in deportation they are less likely to get that symptom checked out. If that happens and they actually have the plague (not the TV kind) then it won't matter if you are a card carrying registered independent thinker who firmly believes everybody should pull themselves up by their own bootstraps. You will be infected too.

This is the time to get our head out of our ass.

From contributor Gl

Extracting it now. I have an illegal next door to me that had $80000 in free surgeries last year so I doubt anyone here is afraid to go to a doctor. You can do what you want but I think you are panicking a bit early. At least wait until all Texans are zombies.

From contributor Sh

Medical profession is a worse business model than a cabinet shop. We are now beginning to see a health care shortage. My family doctor sold her business to a conglomerate because her liability insurance was 10K a month! Tort reform should have been at the top of the list along with competing across state lines for insurance companies. Same coverage in another state with 1/20th the deductible than what I had was cheaper for a family than what I can buy for single coverage. The health care exchange in my state only makes that worse and over time will lessen the number of insurance companies competing in my state. 6-7 years ago I could easily get a quote from a half dozen health insurance companies but now our state exchange only has 2 insurance companies available for the exchange. Less competition is never a good thing for consumers. Just recently I tried to get in to see my family doctor for a sinus infection and no appointments were available for a week. I could have waited around until they fit me in but my schedule doesn't allow for all day doctor office visits. So I tried the other 4 doctors in town and they all told me up front they weren't accepting new patients and they all had similar waiting periods. It's still the best health care in the World but recent changes to the system has me in doubt that it will stay this way for long.

From contributor Ad

"The best health care system in the world".

If you have a extremely rare illness, difficult to diagnose disease or very complicated surgery then one of the top 25 teaching hospitals in the US is the best in the world.

However, you have to get to one, they accept most insurances and if you are sick enough and poor enough they will treat you for free.

It is not obvious to most people that I described .0001% of all cases at best.

In any other metric the US does not come within the top 5 in any measurable way of being the best in the world. In some things there are second world nations ahead of the US. I am not referring to cost, only quality of care.

So if I had Ebola, I would like to go to Yale, Hopkins, Mayo, or Mass General.

Speaking of Ebola, the media has completely neglected to point out that Nigeria has the 7th highest population at 176 million. Not every nation in Africa is small and not populous.

Why bring a bomb on a plane? When you can infect yourself with Ebola and hangout in NYC for a couple of weeks making friends.

From contributor Mi

Holy bleep people. We really live in a culture of fear. I live in Canada and would take higher taxes and free health care any day but regardless, there has been 1 case of Ebola. The U.S. Health system can be debated but it sure beats living in Liberia. Remember SARS?. It was going to kill us all but was well contained. Same thing will happen with Ebola wherever there is a developed health system.

From contributor Sh

The only statistic we measurably come up short on is cost per patient. We treat every disease as good or in most cases far better than other countries. Cancer alone is higher than .0001%... Pundits like to point out mortality rates as a tell all but unhealthy lifestyles plays a large role in this. We eat fatty foods, have bad habits, are only average exercisers and our jobs are less physical than in other countries. I must point out that I feel like we do come up short on preventative care but once you got the disease it's definitely no place like home! As for our glaring health care deficiency.... COST. It's my firm belief Tort reform would help in numerous ways. We are known for over treating and testing our patients.. why?? because physicians are scared of litigation so they order tests and treatment not based on diagnosis but based on legally covering the behind. See judge I ordered five hundred tests what more could I do?? I believe it would help our administrative cost. We currently spend on average 3 times what other countries do on administrative cost and in that includes regulations and litigations. Obviously it would ease the burden of high liability insurance and these 3 things alone would reduce cost but we are bound to lead the world in cost no matter what we do simply because of unhealthy living and higher rates of comfort treatments. Knee surgeries and other elective surgery is extremely high here.

From contributor Pa

Doctors order a lot of tests and do a lot of procedures because that's how they make money.

From contributor Ke

The contention that our medical system delivers high outcomes in general relative to other wealthy countries irrespective of cost is not supportable. As far as a serious public public health hazard like Ebola, we will see.

From contributor Sp

Yeah, our health care is really terrible compared to the one in Liberia, but give Obamacare time and they will be identical.

From contributor ja

Why are you afraid of Obama Care, and I hope for facts or fears not just blaming Obama. I have lived in the third world. we may not be as smart as we think if we do not care in some form for the public good even in some basic form. you keep all medical rich and private and all that means is you die last.

From contributor Sp

Why do you love socialized medicine?

Why do you think the federal government wants or needs your medical records? Why do you trust them with those records?

Why do you think that the government will not manage your health care based on your politics?

Why do you not fear a weaponized IRS running all of the health care in this country?

Why do you wish to become a subject rather than remaining a citizen?


From contributor ca

Spruce Goose,

I think we can all agree that the wealthy are getting richer and the poor are getting poorer. It's not difficult to extrapolate from this what the future will look like without some kind of safety net for those at the bottom of the spectrum.

One part of this safety net is health care. Without access to it you are going to have a lot more disease and sickness. This will bring with it a lot of collateral problems for the nation.

While a lot of our health problems are lifestyle related many more are simply attributable to not being able to pay the monthly medical premium or being disallowed insurance because of a pre-existing condition.

The ACA (Obamacare) is just a first step. When Hillary runs for president and the hispanic vote turns Texas blue you are never going to have another gerrymandered Republican congress again. When that day comes your fear of an armed IRS rationing health care (based on the websites you get your news from will be small potatoes.)

On the bright side we will have a single payer system, tort reform and probably lowered costs of health care.

Much as you don't like Obama, the economy seems to be doing pretty good for cabinetmakers in this country. This is pretty good figuring what this administration inherited six years ago. I could even marry my boyfriend if I had one.

From contributor Sp

Well, there it is - you hate the wealthy and want to destroy the middle class.

Start building cabinets for government facilities and you can turn a big profit with graft and corruption.

If you think Obamacare will reduce the cost to individuals you have been drinking too much koolaide. If you think government intervention into our lives is a net positive, well, good luck with that.

The good news is, as a bona fide card carrying communist you will get top notch care at the state run hospital and top men will be on your death panel. Top men.

The Lightworker (tm) will lower the seas and heal the sick and kill the middle class.

Ebola for all!

From contributor ja

Spruce thanks for responding yet what i take from your answer is Fear based on Contempt without investigation.

Good news is i respect your feelings but the answer from me is No i do not fear this

From contributor ca

Spruce Goose,

Just be grateful you don't get all the government you pay for.

From contributor ja

I agree it may need fixin but it does not need dismantleing,

From contributor Sp

Fear it or not, big government is not your friend.

You may not have any interest in them, but they have interest in you.

Keep giving them your money - I really appreciate your efforts to fund corruption and bankruptcy - may your hard work pay many dividends to those who refuse to work.

Now get back to enriching the government union members. They have things to do, and need your money to do them.

From contributor E

Spruce Goose has discovered our secret agenda! We intend to take over the US by infiltrating woodworking forums and convincing all those weak-minded woodworkers to convert to ideas that are contrary to their own best interests.

If it weren't for Spruce Goose, we could easily have Hillary as Queen, leave our spouses of the opposite sex and be free to marry someone of the other sex, get abortions at will, on demand, preferably on street corners, take all your guns so we can give them to the jack booted government agents, open all the borders to any and all so they will take your job, have the IRS investigate only our opponents, destroy the Christian and organized religions except Islam and Yoga, which you will be encouraged to practice. We will eliminate the death penalty, teach Spanish in schools, and even have text books that teach students to question things and teach evolution. We will force you to accept science against you will. And by (insert superior being name here), we will have Socialized medicine!!

This crap is all so predictable that it just begs the question: Who is manipulating us? Why? How is it that our behaviors have become so predictable, so simple, so easily divined, that we fall into the 'us or them' categories so easily?

That is the clue that there is something else going on besides just a difference in opinion.

From contributor Gl

I fear the guy who wrote the healthcare bill, Ezekiel Emmanuel. He was honest enough to explain the grand plan. We are all better off if we die at the age of 75. That gives me ten more years before they turn me into Soylent Green and feed me to the commies. After all, he says we all are feeble and dimented after 75 so why go on living?

The ACA will soon devastate all company funded health plans which is exactly why it was passed. I was a corporate executive in my past life and can assure you most corporations are chomping at the bit to dump coverage. Just wait until the mandate hits.

From contributor Sh

Why should anyone fear socialized medicine run by the government?? They do such a good job on all the other programs they run. Private hospitals, schools, lenders ect always rank higher than government run institutions. What if the government took over the woodworking industry?? Say they subsidized only a few of your competitors to build lower and middle income families new cabinets? Then your competitors could build high end cabinets at a lower margin and put you out of business. I love private wealthy industry!! It's just better service and goods without all the waste.

From contributor ca

Spruce Goose,

Has it ever occurred to you that the government is really just Google and that your overseer is none-other than Facebook? Have you ever wondered why Linked-In seems so know everybody you have ever had an online interaction with?

Unless you are willing to give up your "smart" phone you have already made the conscious choice to surrender your personal freedom. You did it because the cost-benefit ratio seemed to make sense. The tradeoff of being able to use googlemaps to get somewhere trumped your idealized sense of self.

Since you have already capitulated you might as well get some of the joy that comes with big brother looking over your shoulder. (I doubt you are reading this post under an assumed identity at the public library two counties over).


If you are so convinced that private enterprise is the paragon of efficiency try coordinating an online purchase of Apple computer equipment with the local store in your neighborhood. Try finding out some time if they can figure out whether or not they have a product on the premise for direct pickup like the website said they would. If you think big business is more customer centric than big government try getting the jackboots at Comcast to give you some service some time.

I know there are a whole bunch of people in the back country that do for themselves but all you need is a few forest fires to wipe out a community to see how many socialists you can pack into a foxhole.

You guys are wallowing in fantasy and/or dogma. If you're going to put up with the bullshit you might as well get some of the benefit. One of the benefits of the Affordable Care Act is you don't have to remain at one employer just to maintain access to health care. If you lose your job or have a pre-existing condition you don't get locked out because you're not profitable enough to insure.

From contributor Ji

Just a brief question to this thread.

If people are so against single payer / universal health insurance, why are people eager to to get on Medicaid when they turn 65 and if they are on it, don't want it to be taken away?

It is a single payer system that has lower costs than the insurance companies, unfortunately it is hamstrung because of Congress that it cannot negotiate drug prices.

If we don't want single payer insurance, kick everybody off of Medicaid and let them survive on their own.. As far as paying into it all these years, that is not true. You have been paying for the ones that were currently enrolled.

From contributor Gl

I would prefer tort reform but that will never happen because the entire congress is made up of lawyers. I always said the ACA would be a disaster and it is but I never said single payer would not work. It would eliminate all the lawsuits so I really doubt that the democrats want it. After the employer mandate kicks in most businesses will dump health coverage IMO. If it is a big deal to be able to quit your job and keep your insurance it won't be when your company decides to get out of the health insurance business.

From contributor Da

A business should no more be in the health care provider business than it should be responsible for collecting personal taxes. However, if individuals had to pay their own taxes, Congressmen just might have to fund riot control as a major budget item.

The ACA was designed, proposed,and sold to Congress by the Health Insurance Industry as way to increase their own sales by up to 40% and to eliminate the need for them to employ salespeople, saving them millions. Congress then sold it to us, if you can call it that. This effort cost the insurers about $9,000 average per Congressman. Debate was minimal and involved a lot of theater for the citizens. We were given the two sides of the debate so we had something to be passionate about and score points for our side.

All in all, a very successful and reasonable investment for the Insurance folks. Crony capitalism at its best. Look for many more schemes like this in the future as other industries use this model for their own benefit. Sort of like the sate of Permanent War that we are finding ourselves in nowadays.