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Home : News : NWC EMSS Covid-19 Briefing for March 26 2020

NWC EMSS Covid-19 Briefing for March 26 2020


We continue to operate under CONTINGENCY CONDITIONS so none of the last resort clauses
(use of homemade cloth masks or cloth gowns) are yet in operation.

Our EMS System currently meets the guidelines set forth in these documents that refer to us for our practice at this time

·         We are NOT asking EMS personnel to reuse N95 masks at the present time because EMS use is currently severely limited in keeping with conservation directives. When N95 masks may be used by EMS is specified in the EMS Guidelines issued earlier this week.

If the case numbers of Covid-19 patients (PUI or confirmed) increases to those anticipated by IDPH and issued yesterday in their slide deck (attached here for your use), we will revisit our policy.

It is possible that EMS personnel would not universally execute the very stringent hand hygiene and storage requirements given for mask reuse. If masks become contaminated and reused in violation of CDC and state directives, we cannot guarantee the safety of our EMS workforce or those in close proximity to them.

Right now, between us all, we have adequate supplies of all PPE to meet the demand but conservation and appropriate use is critical.  Our apex numbers have not yet hit, and cases are going up daily.

We are asking the hospitals to remind their staff that just because they may see EMS arrive in what they judge to be inappropriate use of PPE does not mean EMS personnel  are using and depleting scarce hospital supplies. They are usually using agency supplies and must be restocked by their agencies if use is inconsistent with System policy.

If EMS personnel are using PPE in a manner that appears inconsistent with System policy, please bring it to the attention of the hospital’s EMS Coordinator for review and follow up. 

At the same time, if EMS personnel are confronted by hospital staff in a manner that seems harsh, unprofessional, and/or offensive to them, please notify the EMS Coordinator for resolution.

This is not the time to create unnecessary tension or conflict between hospital and EMS personnel over PPE – we’re on the same side in this war against the virus!

We are strongest when the bonds of teamwork are welded tightly.  Together, we will continue to be vigilant and prepared!

Thinking forward: Today, we will be working on and issuing a modification to the EMS Staffing policy based on questions received regarding your reduced workforce due to mandatory work restrictions of your staff.

Please let us know if you need us to support or serve you in any way so policies or practices are in place before you need them!

 Getting ready to step into the arena for another day and so thankful for your partnership!

Matt and Connie

IDPH Webinar information
Healthcare Strategies
PPE Conservation

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