Nurses and home health care aids in CT are struggling to keep themselves safe owing to a lack of personal protective equipment during the coronavirus outbreak, according to a report on Connecticut Public Radio.
Home health care aids in particular are being asked to ration and reuse respirator masks, gloves, gowns and other equipment as they move from home to home. “I wear [one surgical mask] from house to house to house to the most vulnerable patients,” said Martha Marx, a registered nurse at the Visiting Nurse Association of Southeastern Connecticut. “Two months ago, I would have been disciplined if I had done this. It is infection control 101.”
While healthcare workers have expressed their concerns to Connecticut’s governor Ned Lamont and its senator, Richard Blumenthal, the state says availability is limited and that it’s placing orders as equipment becomes available. “I know how serious this is,” said Lamont. “I know the risks people are taking, and we’re doing everything we can to keep you safe.”
Says Anne-Marie Cerra, a hospital nurse: “We have the right to be safe. We have the right to have the equipment we need.”
Read more about home Connecticut healthcare workers and their quest for adequate PPE supplies here.