Healthy Choices

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Sacramento church seeks donations of food, medical supplies for Ebola-stricken West Africa

08/22/2014 5:25 PM

08/26/2014 6:38 AM

Sacramento’s recent Ebola virus scare may have sparked some lasting compassion for those in deep peril in West Africa, where at least 1,200 to 1,300 people have died of the disease.

Or at least, that is the hope of Tim Wulah Jr., pastor of the Friends In Jesus International Church in south Sacramento, where a fundraising and medical supply drive will be held next Saturday, Aug. 30.

Wulah is asking residents to bring cash donations and items needed to help slow the spread of the deadly virus overseas. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention chief Thomas Frieden said recently that bringing the virus under control will take months of diligent work caring for the ill and those with whom they’ve come in contact.

To that end, Wulah’s wish list includes surgical gloves, examination gloves, infrared thermometers, isolation gowns, vitamins, acetaminophen and other medical supplies. Sadly, the list of needed items also includes a grim reminder of the need to keep the deceased segregated from the living: body bags, in both child and adult sizes. The Ebola virus is spread by touching bodily fluids ranging from blood to sweat to tears, and more.

Foodstuffs are also being sought: oatmeal, cornmeal, flour, sugar, canned meat, beans, rice, canned or powdered milk, cereal, cream of wheat and other nonperishables. As for drinks, bottled water, canned juice, canned soda, Gatorade and other health drinks are welcome.

On Thursday night, the Sacramento community learned that a suspected case of Ebola – in a patient who had traveled to West Africa – tested negative for the virus, ending the local Ebola scare. The patient was being held in isolation at Kaiser Permanente South Sacramento Medical Center.

The Friends in Jesus International Church’s Ebola donation drive will be held at the church, from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m., at 8115 Elder Creek Road, Sacramento, CA 95824. Those wishing to donate goods or cash have a week until the event to gather items.

About This Blog

Sacramento Bee reporters Cynthia Craft and Sammy Caiola write about community health issues in the Sacramento region. Their work is in conjunction with the California Endowment, a non-profit health foundation created in 1996.

Cynthia H. Craft is The Sacramento Bee's senior writer on health. She graduated from Ohio State University and previously worked at the Los Angeles Times and California Journal. She was a fellow in 2012 at the National Library for Medicine in Washington, D.C. at the National Institute for Health. Reach her at ccraft@sacbee.com or 916-321-1270. Twitter: @cynthiahcraft.

Sammy Caiola joined The Sacramento Bee as a health reporter in 2014. She is a recent graduate of Northwestern University's Medill School of Journalism, where she was a Top 10 finisher in the William Randolph Hearst College Journalism Awards. Reach her at scaiola@sacbee.com or 916-321-1636. Twitter: @SammyCaiola.

 

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