The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services today announced the launch of a National Ebola Training and Education Center.
A collaborative effort among HHS’ Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response (ASPR), the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and three academic institutions, the program supports further training of health care providers and facilities on strategies to manage Ebola and other emerging infectious diseases.
Through the effort, ASPR and CDC will provide $12 million over the next five years to Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia; Nebraska Medical Center in Omaha, Nebraska; and Bellevue Hospital Center in New York City, New York, which together will co-lead the National Ebola Training and Education Center.
These hospital systems were also recently designated as special regional treatment centers for patients with Ebola or other severe, highly infectious diseases.
“The National Ebola Training and Education Center contributes to our nation’s health security by developing and teaching evidence-based practices of experienced providers and health care institutions in caring for patients with Ebola and other serious infectious diseases,” said Dr. Nicole Lurie, HHS’ assistant secretary for preparedness and response. “While this training starts with Ebola, it also will help the health care community deal with other serious infectious diseases in the future.”
Emory University and Nebraska Medical Center have been working with CDC since December to train more than 460 health care workers from 87 health care systems, including 37 designated Ebola treatment centers, on all aspects of infection control and patient care for individuals with Ebola.
Emory University and Nebraska Medical Center are offering additional training opportunities this summer for up to 400 staff from Ebola assessment hospitals.
The new National Ebola Training and Education Center will expand on the success of this initial work and offer state health departments and health care facilities additional access to the clinical expertise and training capabilities offered by these institutions.
“The ongoing Ebola epidemic in West Africa is proof that a threat anywhere can be a threat everywhere; the United States must continue to prepare,” said CDC Director Dr. Tom Frieden. “Hospitals are often the first place where a new disease threat is recognized. This new center will help our hospitals and healthcare workers prepare to handle new threats and safely care for patients.”