Pandemic Flu - Thread II - page 19

Frist calls for a Manhatten Project: We are so..., you know. He is telling it like it is. Does anyone really understand this? There is nothing that we can do but prepare, but no one is... Read More

  1. by   suzyRN
    so i have been following this thread for a while now and finally decided to say something. being a new nurse and having to recently take microbiology class i actually had to do a presentation on the avian flu. that was last winter and i got a little psycho about it even after the class ended. I was constantly reading stuff online and was getting pretty freaked out. Now as an RN at a huge medical center i feel like I must be ready to face this if or shall i say when it comes. I guess I still have a lot to learn but I am stuck questioning what I will do if it comes to my hospital. Having a husband and 4 yr old child I initially planned to drive to my friends cabin in the mountains and ride it out. But I was reaing here that as nurses they can force us to work. Is that right? i tried to look up any laws pertaining to this. I understand that we all will be forced with a huge decision when this happens. To turn away from the sick kids and protect our own families- or to care for the sick and potentially fall ill ourselves or worse- bring it home to our families. I would feel horrible doing either of these. So what are we to do. I feel like I need a plan in place. any ideas?
    also- Indigo Girl- are you a research nurse or something? You seem to be right on top of this looming threat.
  2. by   indigo girl
    Quote from suzyRN
    so i have been following this thread for a while now and finally decided to say something. being a new nurse and having to recently take microbiology class i actually had to do a presentation on the avian flu. that was last winter and i got a little psycho about it even after the class ended. I was constantly reading stuff online and was getting pretty freaked out. Now as an RN at a huge medical center i feel like I must be ready to face this if or shall i say when it comes. I guess I still have a lot to learn but I am stuck questioning what I will do if it comes to my hospital. Having a husband and 4 yr old child I initially planned to drive to my friends cabin in the mountains and ride it out. But I was reaing here that as nurses they can force us to work. Is that right? i tried to look up any laws pertaining to this. I understand that we all will be forced with a huge decision when this happens. To turn away from the sick kids and protect our own families- or to care for the sick and potentially fall ill ourselves or worse- bring it home to our families. I would feel horrible doing either of these. So what are we to do. I feel like I need a plan in place. any ideas?
    also- Indigo Girl- are you a research nurse or something? You seem to be right on top of this looming threat.
    Suzy RN,

    I was not a research nurse, Suzy, but you might say that I have become one. Some of the other nurses who have contributed to the discussion on this, and a few other threads on this site regarding avian flu, are members of other flu forums, who have been willing to share some of their insights with their nursing colleagues. They are all very knowledgeable and helpful, but also very busy. They are actively involved in discussion and planning elsewhere.

    Did you check this site?
    http://www.pandemicflu.gov/whereyoulive/index.html
    You can also call your Dept of Health or better yet, go down there and talk to them about what they have decided to do. Send them a letter if you want. Wouldn't it be interesting if everyone did this? I think that it would scare the heck out of them if nurses actually started asking them some questions instead of wondering what was expected. Isn't it past time that nurses were proactive? The problem as someone else has said, will be dropped in our laps. What are we going to do about it?

    I believe that it will come down to personal decisions for most nurses. If you are pregnant, I would avoid direct patient contact because pregnancy puts you at greater risk. Those nurses could do telephone triage. If you have to take care of children because schools and daycare will be closed, then that is what you have to do. If you have to care for sick family members than you will not be able to work etc.

    I would like to see that everyone took care of the needs of their own families first by deciding that the family will shelter in place (SIP), and making sure that there is enough food, and water for at least 12 weeks or more if possible. This is what those famous name virologists, who are attending that conference in Singapore this week, are doing for their own families (they have all said this when interviewed), because they know the risks. Get informed, and decide what you need to do to protect your family. Once your family is safe and secure, decide what you are willing to do. If there are other adults in your family that can take over child care, discuss that with them now.

    Have you talked to your hospital yet? Seriously, do this and ask about PPE's in particular. What personal protective equipment is availble? Do they have a plan yet?

    I am hearing that the Red Cross may be putting out information to help families prepare for pandemic flu. You should be aware that the information may be very basic and conservative in approach.
    Personally, I would follow the lead of those who are doing the research
    on avian flu. If they are concerned enough to prepare for interruptions in goods and services, and are putting food and water away for a longer period of time, than I would do the same. These are the guys who know what it is going on, and they admit to being worried.

    I know that you already know all of this and that it won't be just your hospital that will be dealing with this. Sit down with your spouse, and make some realistic plans based on the possibility that this could happen, because it actually could.

    Do your best to get some guidance from your nursing board or the Dept of Health. You may need some support in your planning and decision making process. The folks at Flutrackers, Current Events, Fluwiki and other sites are a diverse and informed group. There are many healthcare professionals over there. Just participating with an aware group of people may help you be better prepared. I would encourage you to go there for some calm and rational discussion, and a realistic look at the issues.
  3. by   indigo girl
    New laws just passed in New Zealand:

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/search/sto...7683027AF1010E
  4. by   kath-rn
    Quote from indigo girl
    New laws just passed in New Zealand:

    New Zealand Herald
    WOW Indigo,

    Either the threat is SO VERY REAL, that NZ gov'ts are willing to publicly propose these measures--or they are preparing the public for some eventuality???
  5. by   indigo girl
    Quote from kath-rn
    WOW Indigo,

    Either the threat is SO VERY REAL, that NZ gov'ts are willing to publicly propose these measures--or they are preparing the public for some eventuality???
    Maybe so...
  6. by   indigo girl
    Los Alamos Scientists Speak to the Public about Avian Influenza
    (hat tip Flutrackers/T. Modesto PhD)
    lamonitor.com: The Online News Source for Los Alamos
  7. by   CrunchRN
    You know I go back and forth between being very concerned about this and wondering if it will happen at all.

    If it does occur I can see we are woefully unprepared.

    I have a spouse and dogs I cherish, family in other states. I am not and never have been an acute care nurse.

    Should I help? Should I stay home so as not to expose my family? What is right?

    What about the economy? If I and many others cannot work for 12 weeks we cannot pay our mortgages etc and will the whole economy go into a depression?

    This is scary, scary stuff. I hope to h**l it does not happen.
  8. by   CrufflerJJ
    i'm not yet a nurse (i'm a paramedic of 15 years, a degreed chemical engineer, & am doing prereqs for an accelerated bs-->msn), but it will be a hard decision as to whether i should stay with my family, or get locked into a hospital caring for patients. i think ultimately i'll take the approach that has worked for me in the past - family comes first. if i feel that i can take care of them (or set them up safely) while taking care of others, then i'll extend my help outside the family. if not, well....time for a hard decision.

    has anybody else given thought to a recent journal article, suggesting that vitamin d may help mitigate cytokine release during an influenza infection, and may minimize the chance of getting infected in the first place? it apparently came about as a result of a prison psychiatrist noting that people on his ward were relatively influenza free, while inmates from other wards surrounding his were getting nuked with the flu. one important disclaimer to the study, though, is that the primary author has ties to some sort of "vitamin d council."

    download and read the full article. the authors make some compelling arguments to link sun exposure, seasonal variations in blood vitamin d levels, and incidence rate of influenza.

    here's a couple links:
    [font=verdana, arial, helvetica, sans-serif][font=monaco, courier new, monospace]
    epidemic influenza and vitamin d

    cjo - abstract
  9. by   suzyRN
    I will have to read the vitamin d article. Thank cruffler. So your approach will be to stay with your family? What if they make you work bc you are a first responder? I have read on a few different forums that if or when this happens the government will have to take matters into their own hands and as licenced professionals they will make us work (from the sound of it no one will be working b/c we all want to stay with our families). I have thought about getting my house well stocked and then just staying at the hospital to care for people- unless my hubby or daughter get sick. That way I can still work and possibly help people but I know that my family is safe. Plus I could drop off supplies to them weekly. I almost feel OCD for formulating a plan like this!!!
  10. by   indigo girl
    Quote from indigo girl
    Very disturbing commentary today from Effect Measure. The Reveres are not usually given to these types of comments. The Editors of Effect Measure are senior public health scientists and practitioners.

    Effect Measure

    The last section of this commentary:



    What else are they not telling us? As if witholding viral sequences wasn't enough...

    I have to ask, does anyone else find this rather alarming?
    -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Avian influenza in felines:

    CurEvents.com - A Global Current Events Discussion Forum - View Single Post - Just found this on Effect Measure!!

    CurEvents.com - A Global Current Events Discussion Forum - View Single Post - Just found this on Effect Measure!!
    Last edit by indigo girl on Dec 14, '06
  11. by   indigo girl
    Quote from CrunchRN
    You know I go back and forth between being very concerned about this and wondering if it will happen at all.

    If it does occur I can see we are woefully unprepared.

    I have a spouse and dogs I cherish, family in other states. I am not and never have been an acute care nurse.

    Should I help? Should I stay home so as not to expose my family? What is right?

    What about the economy? If I and many others cannot work for 12 weeks we cannot pay our mortgages etc and will the whole economy go into a depression?

    This is scary, scary stuff. I hope to h**l it does not happen.
    I read somewhere, that since many might be sick, and that includes people from banks, mortagage lenders etc (they have mortgages also), that there might be a freeze on mortgages temporarily to allow everyone to get back on their feet. If I can find where I read this, I will post it.

    Let us hope that this does not occur, but prepare just in case.
  12. by   indigo girl
    CDC requesting comments on prepandemic and pandemic vaccine prioritization:

    Request for Information (RFI): Guidance for Prioritization of Pre-pandemic and Pandemic Influenza Vaccine

    OK folk, they are requesting your input on this.



    With this RFI, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) requests input from the public on considerations in developing guidance for prioritization of the distribution and administration of both pre-pandemic and pandemic influenza vaccines based on various pandemic severity and vaccine supply scenarios. Specifically, HHS is seeking input on pandemic influenza vaccine prioritization considerations from all interested and affected parties, including but not limited to public health and health care individuals and organizations, as well as those from other sectors of the economy including, for example, travel and transportation, commerce and trade, law enforcement, emergency management and responders, other critical infrastructure sectors and the general public. Previous reports relating to pandemic influenza vaccine prioritization issues are available at Tests, Vaccines & Medications.
    Last edit by indigo girl on Dec 14, '06
  13. by   CrufflerJJ
    Quote from suzyRN
    I will have to read the vitamin d article. Thank cruffler. So your approach will be to stay with your family? What if they make you work bc you are a first responder? <snip>
    I don't know if I'll be at home or what. I'll cross (or burn) that bridge when I come to it. My wife is a Dietitian and nutrition service manager at a local hospital (food service). If she gets pulled into work and I'm on the medic for "the duration", I guess that leaves our 4 dogs to take care of our son & daughter at home.

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