April 17th, 2020


The trail of the N95 mask is potentially as follows: Given to ICU RN by the hospital. The RN in the ICU uses the same N95 mask on two different patients, keeping it in an envelope on the desk outside the patient's room. So it is never discarded, simply removed and put on multiple times in a shift and used in two different patient rooms. The nurse then takes the mask home in the same envelope and spreads it the community. The nurse then brings the same N95 back to the facility for another 3 shifts because x1 N95 mask is good for x3 shifts so then the disease is passed on to 6 other patients (2 per nurse for each shift). Some hospitals ask the nurse to store the used N95 in a bag until the next shift in the ICU. Maybe they can find a way of issuing either x1 N95 to each nurse for every shift or some kind of sterilization process for masks. Clearly there is a shortage of money and PPE and everyone is trying to make a plan. In addition, the disease is spread on the shoes of hospital employees so they need to try get more shoe covers because it's carried from room to room. Some countries have "runners" fetch and carry supplies and meds as much as possible while the nurse stays in one place. We are all trying to stay safe and reduce the spread of disease. I think it can be done. Now hospitals are supplying nurses with scrubs which is great because the disease is left in the hospital. Perhaps we need more infectious disease doctors onsite in the ICU 24/7 and an infectious disease task force to handle the dynamics of the changing Covid 19 guidelines. Basically the disease is spread through contact and droplet. Labor is a huge deal and cost for the hospital. We need a business strategy at a federal, state and decentralized entrepreneurship level to fund labor intensive environments like the ICU sufficiently, as well as cut costs by using local manufacturers and suppliers of PPE, as well as sterilization plants, in order to keep Americans safe and prevent death through cross contamination of disease. Cross infection within facilities and between healthcare personnel is becoming as much of a problem as people within the community getting sick and coming to hospital.

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Comments (1)

Comments (1)

Hi Jacquie:

Thanks for joining the conversation. These stories are just overwhelming. If you were in charge, how would you fix this?

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