CDC Update on PPE Recommendations for COVID-19 (see https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/hcp/guidance-for-ems.html):
Please note the following key changes by the Centers for Disease Control’s EMS Guidance and recommendations for managing patients with known or suspected COVID-19 as of March 10, 2020. The agency's EMS Chief and EMS Medical Director should review this information and must approve any changes in protocols before implementation:
- Facemasks are an acceptable alternative until the supply chain is restored. Respirators should be prioritized for procedures that are likely to generate respiratory aerosols, which would pose the highest exposure risk to HCP.
- Eye protection, gown, and gloves continue to be recommended.
- If there are shortages of gowns, they should be prioritized for aerosol-generating procedures, care activities where splashes and sprays are anticipated, and high-contact patient care activities that provide opportunities for transfer of pathogens to the hands and clothing of HCP.
- When the supply chain is restored, fit-tested EMS clinicians should return to use of respirators for patients with known or suspected COVID-19.
- Updated guidance about recommended EPA-registered disinfectants to include reference to a list now posted on the EPA website.
All Ohio Health work health locations will conduct fit testing for N95 users. Employees have to complete a physical and respiratory questionnaire prior to fit testing. A list of Ohio Health Fit Test locations can be found here.