Date of Conferral
Public Policy and Administration
Christina O. Spoons
Ebola virus release/attack in New Jersey could go unnoticed but have immediate and long-lasting effects on the broader population and security. The risk underscores the need to prepare and enhance the state’s efforts to deal with a release and treat the confirmed cases. This descriptive single case research explored factors for improving nurses’ preparedness, policies, and practices for a bioterrorism release/attack. The epidemiological triangle conceptual framework was used descriptively in exploring, and developing a knowledge base of Ebola virus pathogenicity, characteristics, routes of transmission, and infection. The unit of analysis was Summit Ridge Genesis Healthcare Center. The theory of robust transformation provided structure for this study. Data were collected from studies on bioterrorism, U.S. government bioterrorism policies, and the interview site’s bioterrorism protocol, including nurse interviews and participant observation. A pattern matching technique was used for analyzing data. The healthcare facility has the capacity and human resources to prepare and deal with the public health challenges posed by Ebola. Recommendations based on the study results include that the site train nurses of biological agents preparedness and to conduct table-top and functional exercises. The instructive social change implicit in this study has significant implications for New Jersey policymakers, the facility leadership, and nurses in preparing for a possible Ebola terrorism attack.