08:02am Thursday 12 December 2019

Leading Nursing Journal plays important role in protecting health workers combatting Ebola

The editorial has been commended by nursing and medical researchers across the world for its bravery in being the first piece of published evidence to publicly question the World Health Organisation (WHO), as well as the Centre for Disease Control’s (CDC) guidelines on Ebola personal protection equipment (PPE). Following publication of the editorial in IJNS, Ebola PPE guidelines have been revised.

The author of the editorial, Professor Raina MacIntyre, Head of the School of Public Health and Community Medicine and Professor of Infectious Disease Epidemiology, University of New South Wales, Australia, praised the publication of the editorial, saying “Thank you to Professor Ian Norman, Editor in Chief of IJNS, for publishing our piece at a time when no-one wanted to challenge powerful organisations or stick their neck out, once again, proving that the nursing profession are change agents more than the medical profession! 

“It is unfortunate that it took two nurses in the US becoming infected to force a review of the guidelines… Thank you to the CDC for changing the guidelines, because the world looks to the CDC for guidance, and the CDC influences policy in many countries…”. Read the rest of Professor MacIntyre’s response here.

The Journal’s editor in chief, Professor Ian Norman, Deputy Dean of the Florence Nightingale Faculty of Nursing and Midwifery at King’s said, “I had no doubts about publishing this editorial. It is vitally important that evidence, such as that contained in Professor MacIntyre’s editorial, is bought to the attention of the world without hesitation. I’m glad that the WHO and CDC have reconsidered their guidelines around PPE and I hope the changes will further protect healthcare professionals working to combat the spread of Ebola in West Africa and abroad. This editorial is testament to the power of academic thought in constantly scrutinising and challenging the status quo, and in relying on hard evidence and experience to properly inform the future of healthcare.”

King’s College London

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