TUESDAY, Dec. 2, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Thirty-five hospitals across the United States have been designated as Ebola treatment centers, and more will be designated in the coming weeks, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said Tuesday.
These centers have the staff, equipment, training and resources to provide the complex treatment required to care for Ebola patients, while minimizing risk to health care workers, the agency said.
"We continue our efforts to strengthen domestic preparedness and hospital readiness," Health and Human Services Secretary Sylvia Burwell said in a CDC news release.
More than 80 percent of travelers returning to the United States from Ebola-affected countries live within 200 miles of a designated treatment center, the CDC said.
In West Africa, where the Ebola epidemic is centered, the hemorrhagic virus has killed more than 6,000 people, according to the World Health Organization.
"As long as Ebola is spreading in West Africa, we must prepare for the possibility of additional cases in the United States," CDC Director Dr. Tom Frieden said in the news release.
"We are implementing and constantly strengthening multiple levels of protection, including increasing the number of hospitals that have the training and capabilities to manage the complex care of an Ebola patient. These hospitals have worked hard to rigorously assess their capabilities and train their staff," he said.
The designated Ebola treatment centers are in addition to the three national bio-containment facilities at Emory University Hospital in Atlanta, Nebraska Medical Center in Omaha, and the National Institutes of Health in Bethesda, Md. Those three centers will continue to play a leading role in the overall national Ebola treatment strategy, particularly for Ebola patients evacuated from other countries, the CDC said.
The agency also released guidance for hospitals and state health officials to use when selecting hospitals to be designated as Ebola treatment centers.
The priority areas for Ebola treatment centers are regions served by the five international airports screening returning travelers for Ebola, cities with a high number of returning travelers from West Africa, and cities with large numbers of people from West Africa, the CDC said.
The CDC said the 35 hospitals with Ebola treatment centers are: Kaiser Oakland Medical Center, Oakland, Calif.; Kaiser South Sacramento Medical Center, Sacramento, Calif.; University of California Davis Medical Center, Sacramento, Calif.; University of California San Francisco Medical Center; Emory University Hospital, Atlanta; Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children's Hospital of Chicago; Northwestern Memorial Hospital, Chicago; Rush University Medical Center, Chicago; University of Chicago Medical Center; Johns Hopkins Hospital, Baltimore; University of Maryland Medical Center, Baltimore; National Institutes of Health Clinical Center, Bethesda, Md.; Allina Health's Unity Hospital; Fridley, Minn.; Children's Hospitals and Clinics of Minnesota, St. Paul; Mayo Clinic Hospital, Minneapolis; University of Minnesota Medical Center, West Bank Campus, Minneapolis; Nebraska Medicine, Omaha; Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital, New Brunswick, N.J.; North Shore System LIJ/Glen Cove Hospital, Glen Cove, N.Y.; Montefiore Health System, New York City; New York-Presbyterian/Allen Hospital, New York City; NYC Health and Hospitals Corporation/HHC Bellevue Hospital Center, New York City; The Mount Sinai Hospital; New York City; Children's Hospital of Philadelphia; Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia; University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston; Methodist Hospital System in collaboration with Parkland Hospital System and the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, Richardson, Texas; University of Virginia Medical Center, Charlottesville; Virginia Commonwealth University Medical Center, Richmond; Children's Hospital of Wisconsin, Milwaukee; Froedtert & the Medical College of Wisconsin Froedtert Hospital, Milwaukee; UW Health University of Wisconsin Hospital, Madison, and the American Family Children's Hospital, Madison; MedStar Washington Hospital Center, Washington, D.C.; Children's National Medical Center, Washington, D.C.; George Washington University Hospital; Washington, D.C.
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has more about Ebola.