City, hospital working on flu plan

The worldwide panic over the swine flu outbreak has left people in two distinct camps, some donning masks and gloves while wondering if it’s safe to attend large gatherings, while others consider the issue a bit overblown.

The worldwide panic over the swine flu outbreak has left people in two distinct camps, some donning masks and gloves while wondering if it’s safe to attend large gatherings, while others consider the issue a bit overblown.

Government at all levels is acting on the side of caution and it’s no different in Enumclaw, where officials are forced to prepare for the worst.

“We’re working on a contingency plan,” City Administrator Mark Bauer said. “We need to be prepared.”

The question for city officials, Bauer said, involves maintaining essential services in the face of an outbreak in the community. Bauer and city department heads met Friday to begin discussions about backup plans to keep police, fire and public works functions humming in the event of a health emergency.

Monday, city staff gathered with representatives from both the Enumclaw School District and Enumclaw Regional Hospital.

At the hospital, one patient exhibited symptoms that led medical personnel to conduct the swine flu test and send samples to the CDC in Atlanta. Shelly Pricco, director of patient care services, said doctors are awaiting the results.

She said staff is being cautious, screening patients considered at-risk. That would include patients who have recently traveled to Mexico or those in close contact with anyone who has been in Mexico.

Also, the hospital is encouraging anyone with flu-like symptoms to avoid visiting.

Finally, Friday, the hospital began taking the names and telephone numbers of all those who visit the facility. In case there is an outbreak, Pricco said, the staff wants to be able to contact those who have been in the hospital.

There have been daily meetings, she added, to keep staff updated on the latest information issued by the CDC.

Reach Kevin Hanson at khanson@courierherald.com or 360-802-8205.

More in News

Burn ban in place for Pierce County

The weather may be getting colder, but burn bans have been called for multiple counties due to deteriorating air quality.

Enumclaw’s Van Hulse to compete in national music showcase

Erik Van Hulse, who also goes by his stage name Siboh Nisoh, has been working toward this big break for almost as long as he can remember.

Kiwanis honor four as Students of the Month

Members of the Buckley Kiwanis Club honored a trio of “Students of the Month” during an Nov. 16 gathering.

Pepper addresses ‘false’ recall charges in community meeting

The meeting, held at the Black Diamond library, was a chance for voters to have “an opportunity to hear from both sides before they decide to sign,” the recall petition, Pepper wrote in an announcement for the meeting.

Wilbanks wins close Buckley race

It took a month, but Luke Wilbanks finally knows he’ll be occupying a seat on the Buckley City Council.

Buckley Council race gets recount; results due Dec. 6

The closest general election outcome in Pierce County was found in Buckley, where a razor-thin difference in a City Council race forced a recount by the Pierce County Elections Department.

Enumclaw Council roster rapidly changing

A significant shake-up of the Enumclaw City Council is well under way. Soon to exit city government is Mayor Liz Reynolds, who opted against seeking another term after eight years in the city’s highest office. Already off the City Council is Jan Molinaro, who was elected to fill the mayoral post during the Nov. 7 general election and has stepped away from council.

Santa touring Bonney Lake, Sumner neighborhoods

Santa will once again be joining East Pierce Fire and Rescue around Bonney Lake, Sumner and surrounding communities to wish everyone happy holidays. He’s already toured Milton and Sumner, but there are still many more routes for him to complete before he heads back to the North Pole.

Most Read