HCA, which operates 164 hospitals and 114 surgery centers in 20 states and England, and the CDC Foundation today announced a $1 million cash donation by HCA to the CDC Foundation to help support international Ebola epidemic response efforts involving the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and their work with partners on the ground in West Africa.
“The U.S. and other nations around the world are surging our response to combat the Ebola epidemic in West Africa in an effort to save thousands of lives from this terrible disease,” said CDC Director Tom Frieden, M.D., M.P.H. “It’s still possible to reverse this epidemic and this contribution from HCA, and hopefully others like it, will help scale and speed up our response.”
HCA is one of the leading providers of healthcare services in the U.S. and has a long history of supporting relief efforts including those following the earthquake in Haiti, the Indonesian tsunami, Hurricane Katrina and Typhoon Haiyan in the Philippines. The $1 million cash donation by HCA was made to the CDC Foundation’s Global Disaster Response Fund.
“Ebola continues to spread rapidly in West Africa, and CDC and others have made it clear that the window of opportunity to contain the virus is closing quickly,” said R. Milton Johnson, President and Chief Executive Officer of HCA. “The time to act is now, and we strongly encourage other companies, particularly those in the healthcare industry, to join us in this important effort to save lives.”
Since the CDC ramped up its Ebola response in early July, more than 700 CDC staff members have provided logistics, staffing, communication, analytics, management and other support functions. The CDC currently has more than 100 staff deployed in Guinea, Liberia, Nigeria and Sierra Leone. The CDC Foundation is working with donors like HCA to provide much-needed supplies and equipment for use on the ground in West Africa. These items include personal protective equipment, infection control tools, ready-to-eat meals, generators, vehicles and motorcycles, hiring of locally employed staff, exit screening tools and supplies at airports such as thermal scanners to detect fever.
The Ebola epidemic in West Africa is a humanitarian crisis. The number of individuals infected with the Ebola virus doubles approximately every three weeks with more than 5,800 cases, based on the latest estimates. Tragically, the number of deaths has increased from 1,500 to more than 2,800 in the same time period. These numbers are only expected to climb without immediate action.
“Without additional public health interventions made possible by donations like that from HCA, CDC estimated that the number of Ebola cases in Liberia and Sierra Leone could reach hundreds of thousands or even to over one million people,” said Charles Stokes, President and CEO of the CDC Foundation. “It’s critical that organizations support this vital effort to provide flexible funding that can be used to meet needs on the ground in West Africa. Together, we can all make a difference.”
Founded in 1968, Hospital Corporation of America (HCA) is one of the nation’s leading providers of healthcare services, comprising locally managed facilities that include 164 hospitals and 114 freestanding surgery centers in 20 states and England. Last year, HCA employees and caregivers at the company’s affiliated hospitals were responsible for more than 20 million patient encounters. A leader in quality and patient safety, 80 percent of HCA’s licensed affiliated U.S. hospitals as of December 31, 2012 were on The Joint Commission’s 2013 list of top performing hospitals.
About CDC Foundation
Established by Congress, the CDC Foundation helps the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) do more, faster, by forging public-private partnerships to support CDC’s work 24/7 to save lives and protect people from health and safety threats. The CDC Foundation currently manages more than 200 CDC-led programs in the United States and in 58 countries around the world. Since 1995 the CDC Foundation has launched more than 700 programs and raised $400 million to advance the life-saving work of CDC. For more information, please visit www.cdcfoundation.org.