Health, Emergency Officials Testify on Ebola Threat, Preparedness, Says Barrar
HARRISBURG – Rep. Steve Barrar (R-Chester/Delaware), majority chairman of the House Veterans Affairs and Emergency Preparedness Committee (VAEP), assembled Pennsylvania’s top health and emergency management officials to inform the committee and the public about the Commonwealth’s readiness in the face of the Ebola threat.

At an informational meeting today at the state Capitol, Secretary of Health Michael Wolf, Pennsylvania Physician General Carrie DeLone, and Glenn Cannon, director, Pennsylvania Emergency Management Agency (PEMA), provided testimony on the nature of Ebola and how it is transmitted, and what is being done at the federal, state and local levels to prevent the spread.

Others testifying included Mark Ross, regional emergency preparedness manager, Hospital and Healthsystem Association of Pennsylvania; Heather Sharar, executive director, Ambulance Association of Pennsylvania; Ed Moreland, executive director, Western Berks Emergency Medical Services; and Betsy Snook, chief executive officer, Pennsylvania Nurses Association.

“There are no known cases of Ebola in the Commonwealth, and no flights are landing in Pennsylvania from any of the hot zones where Ebola is prevalent,” said Barrar. “I am pleased that Pennsylvania is taking a very proactive approach to this threat and I am confident our health and emergency services community will be prepared with a unified, coordinated response should that be necessary.”

There is a lot of misinformation concerning the transmission of Ebola. State health officials told the committee that Ebola is spread through direct contact with the bodily fluids of an infected person – not by air or water. They say the likelihood of infection is low among the general population and it is important to keep the threat in perspective.

Health and emergency service providers told the committee they are addressing the equipment and training needs of emergency responders who are on the frontline in the state’s quest to prevent an outbreak of Ebola, and to control it if it happens.

To see Barrar’s remarks following today’s meeting, click here.

To watch today’s hearing, click here.

Representative Stephen E. Barrar
160th District
Pennsylvania House of Representatives

Media Contact: Donna Pinkham
717.260.6452 /
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