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Atermath of Katrina, Returning to a Workplace - Essay Example

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The city of New Orleans, which is rich in cultural and musical tradition, has been devastated beyond recognition during the violent…
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Atermath of Katrina, Returning to a Workplace
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Atermath of Katrina, Returning to a Workplace

My primary concern as an Industrial Hygienist deputed to clean up the hospital in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina would be to prevent or control the spread of infectious diseases such as diarrhea, flu, cold and TB. Because as evidence from similar natural catastrophes suggests, the people returning to New Orleans are likely to suffer from these diseases in the immediate aftermath of Katrina. Gastroenteritis is also likely to be prevalent. Hence I would order my team and also avail of services from other disaster relief personnel and design an basic hygiene awareness program for the hospital. For example, proper hand-washing techniques will be demonstrated to all concerned. Along with practical demonstrations, I would make posters, fliers and email postings to reiterate the proper technique of hand washing. I would place bottles of Gel hand sanitizers at important access points within the hospital. Other infectious diseases that I would try to prevent or control include rashes and skin infections. Once any of these diseases is identified in the surrounding population, it is imperative that diseased individuals are separated from the crowd so as to stop further spread. All the beds and chairs within the hospital will be scanned for fomites. It is advisable to remove soiled cots, mattresses and bed spreads from the premises. (Chew, et. al, 2006)
I would also be concerned about the mold and endotoxin levels in the hospital environment. I will involve the two technicians in my team to bring samples and perform tests for ascertaining mold and endotoxin levels. It is imperative that they wear Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) such as respirators. The advice would be to wear elastomeric respirators. Alongside mold and endotoxin level measurement, I would implement the process of deconstruction, which entails removal of soiled and muddied carpets, removal of ... Read More
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