Melissa Kinnaird, deputy director of the Center for Threat Preparedness, part of the West Virginia Bureau of Public Health, gave a brief presentation Tuesday evening to the Legislature's Joint Committee on Health.
said there have been 10 cases of Ebola
in the United States, two of which were fatal.
There have been no reported cases of the disease in West Virginia.
Melissa Kinnaird, deputy director of the Center for Threat Preparedness, part of the West Virginia Bureau of Public Health, speaks Tuesday evening to the Legislature's Joint Committee on Health concerning the state's efforts to prepare for a possible outbreak of Ebola. (Photo by Michael Erb)
said officials conducted a seminar in October concerning the virus, which has been blamed for more than 5,000 deaths in West Africa.
A "tabletop exercise" is planned for December, and Kinnaird
said information from that event will be used to help further develop the state's plan of attack.
said at the moment, West Virginia's hospitals are not fully prepared to handle an Ebola patient.
"Hospitals are developing plans and training staff," as well as identifying facilities for containment, she
"They are in the process of getting prepared."
emphasized no patients identified with Ebola
would remain at local hospitals.
"No Ebola patient will be treated through the course of the disease in West Virginia," she
Instead the patient would be transferred to one of several out-of-state treatment centers designated by the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, or CDC
said the CDC
is working to establish more treatment centers if needed.