PHOENIX (3TV/CBS 5) – Arizona has received a shipment of medical protective equipment from the Strategic National Stockpile (SNS) and those items will soon be delivered to county health departments to send out to local hospital and medical personnel.
The shipment, which is about a quarter of Arizona’s share of the SNS, contains more than 440,000 pieces of equipment medical professionals need to do their jobs -- take care of those who are sick or injured -- during the coronavirus crisis.
This weekend's SNS shipment includes:
- 60,900 N95 masks;
- 244,000 surgical face masks;
- 26,208 face shields;
- 22,200 surgical gowns;
- 102 coveralls;
- And nearly 90,000 sets of gloves.
Gov. Doug Ducey, along with Dr. Cara Christ, the director of the Arizona Department of Health Services, and Wendy Smith-Reeve, the deputy director of the Department of Emergency and Military Affairs, toured the shipment in a secure location on Saturday while the supplies were being organized for distribution.
Ducey said the supplies would be sent out to Arizona's 15 counties Monday morning. "There'll be more to follow," he said.
Doctors and nurses all over the country have been expressing concern of the lack of necessary personal protective equipment (PPE) in our medical facilities.
A family physician in Ahwatukee says she has heard from medical workers across the Phoenix area, who say they are being told to ration PPE, and in some cases, wash and reuse disposable items.
AZDHS has requested another shipment from the SNS, which is overseen by the Department of Health & Human Services. Those supplies should arrive later this month.
"Strategic National Stockpile is the nation’s largest supply of life-saving pharmaceuticals and medical supplies for use in a public health emergency severe enough to cause local supplies to run out," explained the Department of Health & Human Services' Public Health Emergency web page.
Construction companies are stepping up to help, as well, by donating masks. The masks that doctors and nurses use when treating patients who have contagious diseases are similar to the masks used in the construction industry to protect workers from fine particulate matter.
Some are using social media to ask for donations for protective equipment.
Coronavirus in Arizona
This morning, AZDHS said the number of coronavirus cases in Arizona had climbed to 104. That number is expected to increase as pending test results come in and more people are tested.