Health & Wellness

Ebola Encounter is a "Very, Very Remote Possibility" But the Chatham Emergency Squad is Ready

Steve Williams, forefront, Deputy Emergency Management Coordinator, and Steve Davenport of the Chatham Emergency Squad speak about Ebola preparedness Credits: TAP Chatham

CHATHAM, NJ - The chances of an encounter with an Ebola-infected patient is still a "very, very remote possibility," but members of Chatham's emergency services said that they will be ready to handle such a case, it was reported at Monday night's Borough of Chatham Council meeting.

"With all the stuff about Ebola in the news, I don't want people to get too alarmed, but I thought it would be useful to have our emergency services talk about preparedness that has been put in place," Chatham Borough Mayor Bruce Harris said. "We are prepared and I thought it would be good for our residents to hear what is being put in place."

Steve Davenport of the Chatham Emergency Squad; Steve Williams, deputy emergency management coordinator, and Lisa Gulla, health officer for Chatham and Madison, all addressed the council on protocols being updated and put in place.

Sign Up for E-News

"We in Chatham are extremely fortunate to have the dedicated members of the Chatham Emergency Squad taking the leadership role, developing new squad policies and procedures to address and handle infectious disease-type emergencies," Williams said.

"In addition to the work the Chatham Emergency Squad has undertaken, the Morris County Office of Emergency Management has announced the implementation of a Morris County Infectious Disease Response Team, which was announced (Sunday) afternoon. The team will be operational on Friday, Oct. 31st. This team will supplement our own EMS, should the need arise."

Davenport reported that the Chatham Emergency Squad is calling in all of its personnel, starting Thursday for training on handling infectious diseases, including Ebola.

"Long story short, we feel quite well prepared in terms of development of revised procedures and the gathering of equipment," Davenport said. "We will begin training the squad in earnest this Thursday (Oct. 30). We are calling in the entire membership for mandatory training to be completed in 13 days. They will be taught how to take on and take off personal protective equipment.

"Even though we know and believe that encountering a patient that we suspect to be EBD infected to be a very, very remote possibility, we're treating it as though it could happen tomorrow."

Alex Chorny, the Chatham Emergency Squad Captain, said that 40 to 45 emergency squad members will receive trainiing, and that Chatham is obtaining protective suits to protect personnel from Ebola-like symptoms.

"We are obtaining full body suits," Chorny said. "We're wearing three pairs of gloves. We have more than enough to attire anyone who responds to an infectious case."

Steve Davenport explains the Chatham Emergency Squad preparedness for a case of Ebola in video below

Steve Williams, deputy emergency management coordinator, speaks about protocol for dealing with Ebola

TAP Into Another Town's News:

Sign Up for E-News


A Week at the Library of The Chathams Monday, February 19 – Sunday, February 25, 2018


By Galina Natenzon

Friends of the Library are continuing their book collection in preparation for Annual Book Sale.  Kids are off from school on Monday for Presidents’ Day – bring them to the library!  We have plenty for them to do.  For adults, Professor Licklider’s second lecture on North Korea will take place on Tuesday.  The ...

Imagine a Chatham Toboggan Ride from the Top of Fairmount Avenue to Main Street

Did you know….
there was a time when Chatham kids could ice skate from downtown Chatham all the way to Florham Park? And that a toboggan ride could last from the top of Fairmount Avenue down to Main Street and beyond?

Those were the days!

This was back in the early to mid-1900s. The Passaic River meandered through grassy meadows and woods on the north side of Chatham. The marshy ...


February 20, 2018

To the Editor,

I told my daughter I needed to write about gun violence. Know what she told me? “Mom, be sure you’re not too polarizing. People won’t listen.” She’s right. At age eleven she’s figured out that we adults need to be reminded how to speak to one another in order to fix a problem. But I have hope and belief that we can fix that discourse in our ...


AtlantiCast: Episode 12

On this week’s episode of AtlantiCast, decade of excellence makes headlines, as Atlantic Health’s place on Fortune Magazine’s 100 Best Companies to Work For List leads off the newest episode of AtlantiCast. Also on this week’s show, check out the newest “hybrid” operating room at Morristown Medical Center and find out how Atlantic Health is helping local ...

Adults Who Interact With Teens Offered Free Youth Mental Health First Aid Training

February 23, 2018

With teenage suicide rates on an upswing, a barrage of tragedies in the news, and the heightened pressures of adolescence in a media-frenzied world, it’s more important than ever for caring adults to know how to intervene effectively.

Morris County again this year is funding Youth Mental Health First Aid training through NewBridge Services for adults who regularly interact with children ...