With US military units operating in West Africa the Pentagon’s Transportation Command recently ordered Ebola Isolation Units. With over 4,000 troops deployed it is best to be ready. With only a short time to train troops could easily make a mistake in an Ebola virus zone.
If highly trained doctors and nurses come down with Ebola the ordering of isolation units by the Pentagon seems like a good move. Just in case.
TransCom Rushes Buy Of Ebola Isolation Units; 60 Days From Idea To Test
WASHINGTON: The Pentagon’s Transportation Command — the folks who move most everything for the military from Point A to Point B — are testing a new isolation unit to fit in a C-17 or C-130 aircraft, just 60 days after issuing the requirement.
The head of TransCom, Gen. Paul Selva, told reporters this morning at a Defense Writers Group breakfast that the command realized it needed the units in case anyone in the military was exposed to or came down with Ebola and needed evacuation. Obviously, these units can be used for everything from tuberculosis to the Marburg virus (a relative of Ebola’s) but they were built in response to the Ebola crisis afflicting West Africa.
Selva issued a Joint Urgent Operational Need (known as a JUON) for the units, 12 of which are planned. So far, the one company that built the larger system now being used by the State Department on contract, a firm with the unlikely name of Production Products of St. Louis, has been working on the system. The photo above shows the single unit, which is larger than the new units and can handle only one patient at a time.
The systems are standardized for us with pallets so they can easily be moved and secured on aircraft.
Interestingly, Selva said TransCom worked with the Defense Threat Reduction Agency, which handles biological warfare issues, and the Department of Health and Human Services as it developed the requirements.
“We have the capacity to isolate a single person and that capacity was designed exclusively to handle a SARS patient,” the general said. Believe it or not, the entire US military only had one unit capable of something similar, but it was designed to carry one person suffering from Severe Acute Respiratory Syndromes (SARS).
The new units can carry two patients on a stretcher and four in chairs. They can be linked to allow access for a care giver — properly suited and otherwise protected, of course.
Read More: Read More: Ebola Isolation Units