Sunday, November 02, 2014

How to Get Infected with Ebola

You can catch Ebola by having contact with the body fluids of a person with the disease.

Here is a list of body fluids -- not complete, or medically official, but off the top of my head

1. sweat
2. saliva
3. phlegm
4. vomit
5. snot
6. tears
7. ear wax
8. urine
9. feces
10. blood
11. vaginal discharge
12. menstrual blood
13. semen
14. breast milk
15. pus

Half of health care is the management of the patient's body fluids. We normally blow our own noses, pee in the toilet, and wipe our own behinds. But when we are sick enough to require hospital care, someone else -- the nurse or nurse's aide -- does it for us -- wipes the sweat off our brows, wipes the tears off our face, cleans us all over and all around. Normally the nurse or nurse's aide wears gloves, and should wash their hands both before and after helping a patient. This prevents infection from spreading -- to the nurse herself, and to other patients.

It is the nurse, and the nurse's aide who do this hands-on work. The doctor has far less physical contact with the patient. It is the nurse who is at greatest risk from this disease.

And it is the nurse who does all this work for what you might call normally sick people -- managing all those body fluids...... They never seem to mention this part of the job on Grey's Anatomy, but it is half the work.

No comments: