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Committee assesses changes to PPE practices

07 May 2021

Airborne and eye protection algorithms updated

By: Marge Willis, nursing director

As the pandemic continues to evolve, the PPE committee, inclusive of Dr. Chaudhary and Dr. Anderson, continues to meet monthly to monitor PPE supply and review any new guidelines published by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and Oregon Health Authority. With that, updates to the PPE algorithms will occur adapting our PPE practices based on supply and recent published information. 

At the last PPE committee meeting, changes were approved to the Airborne and Eye Protection algorithms.  Though not exhaustive, here are a couple highlights of changes:

  • Outpatient/clinic settings are no longer required to wear eye protection as long as the patient can reliably wear a face mask.
  • All CAPR shields must be cleaned after each use and reused for patient care until no longer meeting their intended purpose. Please do not discard them unless they are no longer usable. Only those who do not fit another airborne mask (N95, P-100) should wear a CAPR. The PPE committee continues to promote the use of P-100s and you may still be fit test to a P-100 at Employee Health. 
  • N95 masks are no longer being reused between patients and/or reprocessed. They are to be discarded after each patient encounter. Now that the supply chain is better restored, we are reverting back to our standard infection prevention practices.
  • When entering a Special Droplet or Droplet Precautions room, please adhere to infection prevention practices and obtain a new surgical/procedure mask prior to entering. The mask is to be discarded after exiting the patient's room and a new mask obtained.

The PPE committee members are committed to making decisions that will ensure the long-term ability for us to safely take care of patients. We want to share our thanks and gratitude to all team members for their efforts to maintain safety for ourselves and our patients. “No patient, employee or provider harm is acceptable to us!”