Tags: Trump Administration | inspector general | hospitals | ppe

IG Report: Hospital Suffering Severe Shortages of PPE, Tests

a nurse wearing personal protective equipment (PPE) walks toward an emergency room door
A nurse wearing personal protective equipment (PPE) walks toward the emergency room door, Sunday, April 5, 2020, at Brooklyn Hospital Center in New York.(Kathy Willens/AP)

By    |   Monday, 06 April 2020 02:42 PM

Hospitals nationwide reported severe shortages of tests and protective equipment, as well as concerns about keeping health workers safe during the coronavirus, according to a report released on Monday by the Department of Health and Human Services inspector general.

Hospitals said they are being forced to improvise in some cases by using construction masks or homemade ones, which are not as effective in protecting health workers.

The report, which included interviews with administrators from 323 randomly selected hospitals throughout the United States, was conducted from March 23-27.

Even when more supplies arrived from the government, they did not always relieve the shortage, the report found. One hospital said 2,300 N95 masks came from a state stockpile, but could not be used because the elastic bands had rotted. Another hospital reported that its previous two shipments from a federal agency had protective equipment that had expired 10 years ago. 

Critics have urged the Trump administration to take a more prominent role in coordinating the purchase of needed supplies, even as the president said he wants states to take the lead, The Hill reported.

The report cited a common complaint from hospitals that “they were in competition with other providers for limited supplies, and that government intervention and coordination could help reconcile this problem at the national level to provide equitable distribution of supplies throughout the country” at reasonable costs.

The report also stressed that a lack of tests and the time it took to obtain results caused hospitals had to use up bed space and protective equipment caring for patients while awaiting this information.

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Hospitals nationwide reported severe shortages of tests and protective equipment, as well as concerns about keeping health workers safe during the coronavirus, according to a report released on Monday by the Department of Health and Human Services inspector general.
inspector general, hospitals, ppe
263
2020-42-06
Monday, 06 April 2020 02:42 PM
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