How hospitals are preparing for Zika: 5 survey findings

With at least one Zika case reported in every state in the U.S., except Alaska, hospitals and health systems across the country are taking steps to prepare for a full-fledged Zika outbreak, according to a Premier survey.

"As we monitor the implications for the possible spread of Zika in the U.S., health system leaders aren't waiting on the sidelines and have begun taking action to ensure the proper infrastructure and procedures are in place to address this emerging public health issue," said Gina Pugliese, RN, vice president of the Premier Safety Institute.

The survey's results include responses from 60 healthcare C-suite leaders from June 8 through July 25. Here are five findings from the survey.

1. Roughly 74 percent of respondents said their organization has started to set up or has already implemented processes to screen and monitor patients for Zika and report cases to public health departments.

2. About half of health system leaders (53 percent) say they've started or have already implemented comprehensive screening and testing of pregnant women who might have Zika.

3. About 75 percent of hospitals and health systems are starting to or have finished educating clinical staff about precautions for treating women and infants during labor and delivery if the mother has Zika.

4. Hospitals and health systems are also educating patients about Zika risks — 77 percent have started to advise women of childbearing age about risks of travel to areas with ongoing Zika transmission.

5. Roughly half of respondents said their organization has started to assign or has already created staff leaders to coordinate Zika prevention efforts.

More articles on Zika:
Quest Diagnostics launches Zika antibody test 
Scientists able to detect traces of Zika from eye swabs 
Low-tech traps target Zika mosquitoes in Miami


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