Saturday, April 19, 2003

Quarentine thought for the day

When a patient is suspected of having SARS in Hong Kong, they are put in a large ward where it will be determined if they actually have SARS or not. The ward is shaped like the letter H. The center cross beam of the H is where the nurses station is located. The two upright sections of the H are where the patients are located. These 4 branches each hold 12 patients (this is what I observed in the Ruttongee Hospital, Hong Kong). That is up to 48 patients. All of this area is enclosed. The nurses do not go in and out of the infected area, but rather are trapped with the patients for their 8 or 12 hour shift, whatever the case may be. Some of the patients have SARS, some did not. But by the time it is over, all have been exposed. A man came in with a broken leg, and died of SARS before his hospital stay was over.

This is the reason that 1/3 of all SARS cases are in Hong Kong, and 1/3 of all of those are medical personel.


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