Providence In The News

Hospitals aren’t ready for Ebola: B.C., Ottawa nurses

Nurses in Ottawa and Vancouver say that the hospitals they work in aren't ready to deal with a case of Ebola.

Some nurses who dealt with a suspected Ebola case at The Ottawa Hospital's General Campus over the Thanksgiving weekend have described the experience as a “nightmare,” citing concerns about a lack of training and inadequate equipment.

Among other things, nurses were given protective equipment that left their necks and wrists exposed, in some cases, to potential infection, said Frances Smith, president of local 83 of the Ontario Nurses Association.

Flood of drug overdoses in Vancouver underscores need for greater outreach (Dr. Steve Mathias)

A flood of drug overdoses at Vancouver’s supervised injection site is being blamed on fentanyl, a highly dangerous substance that looks like heroin and which is increasingly being sold on the streets.

Enzyme may be key to stopping fatal sepsis outcomes (Centre for Heart Lung Innovation)

Severe sepsis is an infection from any source that threatens to shut the patient's vital organs down.

Vancouver company develops 3-D printing of human tissue

You may have heard of printing on demand.

A Vancouver startup, Aspect Biosystems, is putting a sci-fi twist on that, printing human tissues on demand.

The company is creating human body tissue using 3-D printing, using a technology that provides more effective ways to test new drugs and could lead to 3-D bioprinting of entire organs.

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VCH expands routine HIV testing to Sea to Sky

Vancouver Coastal Health (VCH) is expanding its routine HIV testing program to Whistler, Pemberton and Squamish in an effort to improve early diagnosis and change perceptions around testing.

“Basically what we're doing is de-stigmatizing HIV testing,” explained Dr. Paul Martiquet, the coastal medical health officer for VCH. “Rather than just testing only high-risk individuals, we're expanding the program to everybody now.”

Pushing Canadian HIV/AIDS research further (B.C. Centre for Excellence in HIV/AIDS)

A one-of-a-kind national HIV/AIDS study, led by Simon Fraser University health scientist Robert Hogg, is getting new funding to expand its mandate.

Toxic heroin causes 31 overdoses at Insite in Vancouver (St. Paul's Hospital)

Toxic heroin caused 31 overdoses in two days at Vancouver's safe injection site — believed to be a record for the facility that opened 11 years ago.

B.C. marks Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Day

October 15 is Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Day, which is yet to be recognized across Canada (currently, it is official in B.C., Manitoba, Saskatchewan and the Northwest Territories).

Like Tam, thousands of Canadian families mourn the death of their babies every year.

In 2011 alone, 1,810 infants died within one year after birth, and 2,818 babies were stillborn. While the numbers are staggering, families often grieve in silence.

Clea Machold and Hala Kamaliddin report

First Nations members vital to Island Health services

Sabrina Blanchard grew up on home-dried fish and moose meat, hearing her First Nations language, Tutchone, spoken at family gatherings and in her Yukon school, where it was taught.

Now, when Blanchard is at work, as a nurse in the neurological unit at Victoria General Hospital, and encounters a First Nations patient, there’s a little moment of recognition.

It’s not extra-sensory. It’s just a little acknowledgment of two people with some similar cultural histories and a mutual respect for shared experiences.

Richard Watts reports

B.C. nurses say province unprepared for Ebola

The discovery of three suspected Ebola cases in Metro Vancouver has exposed a glaring lack of preparation to deal with the disease, according to the B.C. Nurses’ Union.

Union president Gayle Duteil said even though tests confirmed all three cases were false alarms, the scares revealed many nurses lack critical Ebola training.

“I do not believe that we are prepared on the ground level, on the front line,” Duteil said.

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