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Ebola preparedness siphons funds from other hospital needs, UCI Health expert says

December 12, 2014

IN THE NEWS: Ebola preparedness at U.S. hospitals is unlikely to benefit care for other diseases, a U.C. Irvine Health infectious disease expert says, adding that fear of the disease led to diverting funds from other hospital needs.

Dr. Susan Huang, medical director of epidemiology and infection prevention for UCI Health, tells the Huffington Post that the investment in specialized staff training and protective equipment for Ebola care is not likely to used for normal hospital routines.

"We have over 5,000 hospitals [in the United States], but at the end of the day, probably less than 10 hospitals will have seen a case by the time the Ebola outbreak is over," Huang said.

"This abundance of caution driven by fear is causing hospitals to overconsume goods and divert dollars from other projects in the hospital that are largely to improve the quality of care,” she added. "Whether it’s cancer, surgery or other infectious diseases, all of those dollars were siphoned from those types of projects and placed into Ebola."

View the full Huffington Post article ›