It’s been said to think globally and act locally, right now I’m cultivating an aversion to CNN. Nothing personal but the style of reporting contains threads of anticipated doom, liberally laced with fear, and yes there is certainly cause to be concerned but let’s be responsive not reactive. That or we will all need some degree of sedation to make it through the day (or night depending on one’s work schedule).
There is a different environment here in Ontario, it’s worth noting that SARS provided some outcomes that will likely help us to deal with future emerging infectious diseases. The importance of screening, evidence-based protocols, adequate training and staffing resources, multi-modal communications from one’s own organization, professional association, union, government bodies and the World Health Organization are key elements. Public Health agencies are truly our sentinels for Population Health and I trust our colleagues are equal to the task of screening, monitoring, and preparing for all manner of contingencies. The provincial government has articulated the importance of protecting health care workers (that would be clinicians and our valuable support staff), and the public, and the government has demonstrated action by providing funds to Doctors without Borders and the Red Cross–agencies providing on the ground services in the hot zone of Ebola. The federal government has sent shipments of personal protective equipment, portable labs, monies, and the Canadian developed vaccine to be tested in the field.
Personally we need to consider our professional obligations, be mindful of our infection control practices not only for our own health but we’re accountable to our family, friends, patients, and community. We maybe called upon to be courageous if necessary and we have professional standards and code of ethics to consider and reflect upon. I know I will be ready to practice if conditions change to a more heightened protection protocol, and mindful of my responsibility to keep my body, mind, and soul optimal.
For the health workers in West Africa our respect and admiration for the work being done, sympathies for those who have died in the line of duty. Please consider donating to one of the agencies providing care and if you’re inclined prayers for all concerned. Namaste.
Morrie Schwartz, in “Tuesdays with Morrie” by Mitch Albom
So many people walk around with a meaningless life. They seem half-asleep, even when they’re busy doing things they think are important. This is because they’re chasing the wrong things. The way you get meaning into your life is to devote yourself to loving others, devote yourself to your community around you, and devote yourself to creating something that gives you purpose and meaning.