Occupational Health urges precautions for those returning from Ebola-affected regions

With travel to specific regions in West Africa currently raising a potential risk of exposure to Ebola, Vanderbilt University Medical Center has protocols in place to screen, identify and appropriately isolate patients who meet clinical criteria for Ebola exposure.

“Similarly, we need to ensure that faculty and staff who have recently travelled to an affected area are screened for their safety to return to campus,” said Melanie Swift, director of the Vanderbilt Occupational Health Clinic and assistant professor of medicine. Faculty and staff who have traveled to any Ebola-affected area (currently Sierra Leone, Liberia and Guinea) should monitor their temperature and symptoms for 21 days after leaving the area and should call the Occupational Health Clinic at (615) 936-0955 prior to their return to work, she said.

Via telephone interview, an OHC clinician will determine the risk of exposure, screen for any symptoms, and advise the employee of any additional monitoring or precautions needed. OHC will advise the employee and supervisor regarding when the employee may safely return to work.

As always, international business travelers should schedule a pre-travel evaluation with the Occupational Health Clinic four weeks prior to their departure. At that visit, OHC provides timely disease outbreak information, education on special precautions or monitoring, and all necessary vaccinations and prescriptions.

For more information, visit the OHC website.