Global Health Chronicles

Helena McCarthy

David J. Sencer CDC Museum, Global Health Chronicles


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00:00:00 - Introduction

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Partial Transcript: This is Sam Robson. It is March 24th, 2017, and I have the privilege of sitting here with Ms. Helena McCarthy in a restaurant in Kenema, Sierra Leone.

Keywords: nurses; patient care

Subjects: Kenema (Sierra Leone)

00:01:31 - Early life through nursing school

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Partial Transcript: Now, can I back up and ask you when and where you were born?

Keywords: doctors; nursing school; parents

Subjects: Bo (Sierra Leone : District); Kenema District (Sierra Leone); Liberia; Sierra Leone

00:06:02 - First nursing positions

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Partial Transcript: So what happened? Where did you go after nursing school?

Keywords: IMC; Kenema Government Hospital; MSF; bedside; gratitude; mentors; nurse-patient relationships; patient care; refugees

Subjects: International Medical Corps; Medecins sans frontieres (Association); Sierra Leone--History--Civil War, 1991-2002

00:13:12 - Ebola's beginnings in Sierra Leone/First cases in Kenema

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Partial Transcript: I’m interested in what kind of resources the Kenema Government Hospital had in the years before Ebola, like basic supplies like gloves and basic medical equipment.

Keywords: Kenema Government Hospital; laboratories; medical supplies; testing; trainings

Subjects: Kailahun District (Sierra Leone); Lassa fever

00:18:29 - Colleagues getting sick/Experiencing stigma as a nurse

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Partial Transcript: It was really tedious. And even within that, we lost most of our colleagues.

Keywords: colleagues; duty; family; fear; friends; hairdresser; housing; landlords; nurses; stigmatization

00:22:01 - Witnessing the Ebola epidemic

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Partial Transcript: How long were patients in the Lassa ward?

Keywords: bedside; children; emotions; encouragement; motivation; nurse-patient relationships; stigmatization; survivors; witnessing

00:28:11 - Training on working with Ebola patients

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Partial Transcript: Can you tell me a bit about, did you receive special training to deal with Ebola?

Keywords: IRC; donning and doffing; personal protective equipment (PPE)

Subjects: International Rescue Committee

00:30:50 - Working with Dr. Khan and Dr. Crozier

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Partial Transcript: Who were some of the doctors who you worked most closely with?

Keywords: D. Grant; I. Crozier; Sheik Humarr Khan; doctors; exposures

00:36:31 - Use of oral rehydration solution/Experiencing stigma

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Partial Transcript: As time passes, did you notice changes occurring in how you were able to treat Ebola?

Keywords: oral rehydration solution (ORS); stigmatization

00:38:35 - Work with CDC staff

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Partial Transcript: Do you remember working with any of the people from CDC?

Keywords: A. Purfield; CDC; friends; friendship

Subjects: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (U.S.)

00:41:16 - The closing of Kenema Government Hospital/Being charge nurse

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Partial Transcript: So how did your work with Ebola end? How did it wrap up at Kenema Hospital?

Keywords: Ebola treatment units (ETUs); IFRC; Kenema Government Hospital; holding centers; isolation units; signs and symptoms

Subjects: International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies; Lassa fever

00:46:20 - Payment during and after the Ebola epidemic

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Partial Transcript: I’ve heard that sometimes there were people who did strikes during Ebola who refused to work. And in part because they were not getting paid.

Keywords: employment; jobs; labor; payment; salary; strikes; survivors; volunteering; work conditions

00:50:20 - Perceptions of nurses, at the community and family level

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Partial Transcript: Do you still face any kind of stigma from the community with their attitudes?

Keywords: chlorine; clothing; decontamination; fear; safety; stigmatization; touch; violence