Impact of Ebola Crisis on a Nurse

Impactof Ebola Crisis on a Nurse

Impactof Ebola Crisis on a Nurse


Ebolavirus disease is a very serious and&nbspusually a fataldisease in humans and nonhuman primates such as gorillas, chimpanzeesand monkeys. Ebola is infrequent and deadly disease caused by theinfection with a virus in the family called Filoviridae, genusEbolavirus. Five ebolavirus species have been identified, four ofwhich have been known to cause the disease in humans. They are Zaireebolavirus, Tai Forest ebolavirus, Sudan ebolavirus and Bundibugyoebolavirus. The fifth species causes the disease in non-humanprimates but no cases have been reported in humans(Canadian Critical Care Society, 2010, p. 12). This paperaddresses the signs and symptoms of Ebola virus, treatment, impactson nurses and public health concerns caused by the Ebola virus.

Signsand symptoms diagnostic tests

Aperson infected with the Ebola virus is not contagious until signsstarts to appear. The Signs and Symptoms of the Ebola virus include:Severe headache, Fever, unexplained bleeding, Muscle pain, Vomiting,Stomach pain and Diarrhoea. Symptoms will mostly appear from 2 to 21days after exposure to the Ebola virus. How one recovers from Eboladepends on their immune system. Patients who recover from the Ebolainfection are reported to develop antibodies that last for up to 10years. Samples from the patient infected with the Ebola virus arecollected and tested to confirm infection in a laboratory. Laboratorytests used in diagnosis of Ebola virus include Antigencapture enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) testing, IgM ELISA,Polymerase chain reaction (PCR) and Virus isolation(Draper, 2002, p. 4).


Patientsdiagnosed with Ebola virus infection are isolated in hospitals or inplaces under close medical supervision,&nbspwhere their bloodpressure&nbspand blood oxygen levels are managed at the correctlevels and also their body organs supported as infections aretreated. Dehydration in Ebola patients is common, therefore providingintravenous fluids and balancing electrolytes is very vital. Otherinfections are treated as they appear to avoid further complications(Fact Sheet, 2014).

Impacton Nurses

Therisk of infection in nurses is a concern since they can becomeinfected and transmit the virus to their families and friends. Thenurses are therefore advised to follow the recommended infectionprevention guidelines, which include wearing appropriate PPE to lowerthe risk of becoming infected. Hospitals with nurses caring for Ebolapatients are recommended to monitor and manage blood exposures toreduce the risk of spreading the disease (Stimola,2010).

Publichealth concerns

Whencases of the disease appear, there is high risk of transmission ofpeople within the affected location. Therefore, health care staffsmust be in a position to identify a case of Ebola and be prepared touse proper infection control procedures. The aim of these measures isto avoid direct contact with the blood and body fluids of thediseased patient. Healthcare staffs should also request diagnostictests and prepare samples for testing elsewhere(Draper, 2002).


Medicalpractitioners must be alert to Ebola virus disease cases especiallyin places where it is likely to occur.&nbspThey must be able toidentify possible cases of Ebola and provide care to the affectedpatients and therefore reduce public health threat to others.Ebola virus is a very dangerous disease and care must be taken toavoid spreading the virus further.


CanadianCritical Care Society. (2010). EbolaClinical Care Guide.A guide for clinicians in Ebola, 5, 6-10.

Draper,A. (2002). Ebola.New York: The Rosen Publishing Group.

FactSheet. (2014, September 15). Ebolavirus disease.Retrieved from

Stimola,A. (2010). Ebola.New York: The Rosen Publishing Group.