Think outside the box, ask for guidance and pray as much and as often as possible. This woman did not contract Ebola while caring for her family members. We are all capable even under the worst possible circumstances. (As difficult as it was to have them turned away from hospitals, she gave them a better chance at survival.)
The 22-year-old, who was in her final year of nursing school earlier this year, single-handedly took care of her father, mother, sister and cousin when they became ill with Ebola beginning in July.
And she did so with remarkable success. Three out of her four patients survived. That’s a 25% death rate — considerably better than the estimated Ebola death rate of 70%.
Kekula stayed healthy, which is noteworthy considering that hundreds of health care workers have become infected with Ebola, and she didn’t even have personal protection equipment — those white space suits and goggles used in Ebola treatment units.
Instead, Kekula invented her own equipment. International aid workers heard about her “trash bag method” and taught it to other West Africans who can’t get into hospitals and don’t have protective gear of their own.
Every day, several times a day for about two weeks, Kekula put trash bags over her socks and tied them in a knot over her calves. Then she put on a pair of rubber boots and then another set of trash bags over the boots.
She wrapped her hair in a pair of stockings and over that a trash bag. Next she donned a raincoat and four pairs of gloves on each hand, followed by a mask.
It was an arduous and time-consuming process, but she was religious about it, never cutting corners.
UNICEF Spokeswoman Sarah Crowe said Kekula is amazing.
“Essentially this is a tale of how communities are doing things for themselves,” Crowe said. “Our approach is to listen and work with communities and help them do the best they can with what they have.”
She emphasized, of course, that it would be better for patients to be in real hospitals with doctors and nurses in protective gear — it’s just that those things aren’t available to many West Africans.
No one knows that better than Kekula.
Angels come in different forms. I think that Kekula will always be an angel. Woman who saved family from Ebola coming to U.S.