As it continues to work to protect the country against highly infectious diseases, the Centers for Disease Control is taking a close look at the CDP’s new highly infectious disease ward and its set of highly infectious disease-related courses.

“We have a lot of guidance on the subject, and a lot of related online courses,” said Capt. Amy Valderrama, a deputy team leader in the CDC’s National Center for Emerging and Zoonotic Infectious Diseases.  “But we don’t have hands-on training (like that offered by the CDP).

“We’re interested in seeing how we might work closer together” to achieve our collective goal of a nation prepared to handle any re-emergence of such diseases, she added.

The CDP opened its new highly infectious disease ward in late August.  The ward spans more than 4,000 square feet and includes a number of enclosed rooms that allow for the isolation and safe treatment of patients with highly infectious diseases. 

CDP courses related to highly infectious diseases include Barrier Precautions and Controls for Highly Infectious Disease and Personal Protective Measures for Biological Events.  Students attending the Center’s Healthcare Leadership for Mass Casualty Incidents course also receive some HID-related training.

While the training ward and HID-related course curriculum are important, both have received increased attention in recent months. That’s because the world is currently grappling with the second largest Ebola outbreak on record, this time in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. 

More than 1,900 people have died and 3,000 infections have been confirmed in that country in the past year, according to the World Health Organization.