Coronavirus Discussion Thread

NysEms2117

ex-Parole officer/EMT
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Last edited:

Bullets

Forum Knucklehead
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FWIW, i tested positive for antibodies in June and tested negative twice last week. Wonder if this is normal?
 

Summit

Critical Crazy
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FWIW, i tested positive for antibodies in June and tested negative twice last week. Wonder if this is normal?
It's not abnormal. It doesn't mean you are necessarily no longer immune... if you ever were immune.
 

Tigger

Dodges Pucks
Community Leader
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Finally got a large quantity of wipes in last week so we should be set for a bit, but man that is a struggle. We have other options but in the interest of keeping crews motivated to do a good job cleaning after every patient...wipes it is. We're doing wellish on PPE, I can't just order gloves anymore but my vendor is good about approving a case or two every few weeks. By reducing the number of providers contacting respiratory patients we've reduced N95 use...as to whether this is appropriate who knows?
 

akflightmedic

Forum Deputy Chief
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I do know some of the smaller departments in my area have worked together on supplies. Being that call volume can vary so drastically from one town to the next, and some depts had stockpiles from low usage anyways, they now just keep ordering their usual pars and then reimburse each other based on needs. It works for them.
 

PotatoMedic

Has no idea what I'm doing.
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As Red Green says. "Remember I'm pulli'n for ya, were all in this together."
 

MMiz

I put the M in EMTLife
Community Leader
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Appreciate the responses. I'm not in need of anything, but I find it fascinating to see how different agencies are handling the situation.
 

Peak

ED/Prehospital Registered Nurse
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Apparently we are in PPE heaven. I no longer have to give away my firstborn to get PPE, and we are no longer reusing any supplies.
 

Summit

Critical Crazy
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Gloves, gowns, and surgical masks in good supply
N95 supply is intermittent on individual types leading to the need to frequently re-fit-test some users
PAPRs are still heavily backordered with many months of lead time
HEPA blowers are still hard to get with many weeks of lead time
 

Jim37F

Forum Deputy Chief
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Meanwhile we're starting to run out of N95s here. I dont think we have any issues with gloves or gowns, and we all just got issued new goggles and face shields (and apparently we're gonna get plastic sheets to drape over patients for CPR calls...)

But N95s, we're being asked to reuse them, we even got UV machines to sanitize them in between use (though you can only use it a max of 5 times before the UV breaks down the mask too much) so especially on calls where there's a (perceived) low risk of COVID or other "nasty" to see guys just spray their N95 with spray disinfectant and use it again, and then "nuke" it for the next shift and end up keeping the same N95 for the whole cycle (though pretty much any CPR or BVM case or really any known or suspected COVID positive or other "nasty" we will toss immediately afterwards, we have just enough stock...)

We have like 3 boxes of one size I'm fit tested for in station, and apparently none left (of any size I'm fit tested for) in the storeroom at the moment...

And if you go on a CPR or BVM call wearing an N95 style/size you're not fit tested for, they want you to self isolate/quarantine afterwards. One of the other shifts at my station had that happen to them...

We did get half face respirators for. Initially intended for Engineers pumping at fires if the smoke blows onto them so they don't have to go on air to stay at the pump, we got P100 cartridges and half masks for everyone now to be used as a backup to the N95s. We also got an adapter to use those P100 cartridges with our SCBA facemask as well...
 

Summit

Critical Crazy
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@Jim37F 5 UV cycles is likely too much unless you have a specific study for your UV source with your specific mask. 2 UV cycles is what I remember when I was I looking into it
 

FiremanMike

EMS Coordinator
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If you guys were unaware, there’s a company called Battelle which has an approved sanitizing process. You need to setup an account with them and then you just ship them off when soiled..

I‘ve not sent any off yet as our burn rate has been extremely low, but I’ve had my account setup for months..

only thing - they won’t do p100 filters or KN95, only stamped N95 masks..
 

Summit

Critical Crazy
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If you guys were unaware, there’s a company called Battelle which has an approved sanitizing process. You need to setup an account with them and then you just ship them off when soiled..

I‘ve not sent any off yet as our burn rate has been extremely low, but I’ve had my account setup for months..

only thing - they won’t do p100 filters or KN95, only stamped N95 masks..

It depends on the N95 and the process. We only do 2 UVGI treatments before we waste the mask due to degradation concerns. I had a pile of studies on it a few months back, but here's one from my browser history:

 

FiremanMike

EMS Coordinator
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It depends on the N95 and the process. We only do 2 UVGI treatments before we waste the mask due to degradation concerns. I had a pile of studies on it a few months back, but here's one from my browser history:

They claim a mask can be cleaned up to 20 times using vaporized hydrogen peroxide
 

Summit

Critical Crazy
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They claim a mask can be cleaned up to 20 times using vaporized hydrogen peroxide
Oh its the H2O2 system, thought it was UV.
 

Jim37F

Forum Deputy Chief
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@Jim37F 5 UV cycles is likely too much unless you have a specific study for your UV source with your specific mask. 2 UV cycles is what I remember when I was I looking into it
Per the Procedure published by our departments OSHO Battalion Chief, it says "Do not use/sanitize a N95 mask or filter more than five times. After the fifth cycle, properly dispose of the N95 mask and obtain a new N95 mask or filter set."

The Cleanslate machine itself, is programmed with a 100 second cycle for N95 and other porous materials, and a 20 second cycle for non-porous materials (i.e. phones, keys, etc).
The machine uses a Ultraviolet germicidal irradiation (UVGI) at 1.4 J/cm², and the 100 second cycle "represents 40% more strength than the CDC recommendation."
 
OP
Akulahawk

Akulahawk

EMT-P/ED RN
Community Leader
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N95 supply is intermittent on individual types leading to the need to frequently re-fit-test some users
PAPRs are still heavily backordered with many months of lead time
Where I work, we are starting to look at rationing our N95 masks again. We used to have 3 different masks (one style w/ 2 sizes and 1 "universal" size) and now we have gone to a different mask style so lots of fit-testing is needed...

But I now have my own TR-600 PAPR system. I didn't have to wait too long to get it. All I have to do now is get it approved for use at work.
 

Summit

Critical Crazy
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Where I work, we are starting to look at rationing our N95 masks again. We used to have 3 different masks (one style w/ 2 sizes and 1 "universal" size) and now we have gone to a different mask style so lots of fit-testing is needed...

But I now have my own TR-600 PAPR system. I didn't have to wait too long to get it. All I have to do now is get it approved for use at work.
Colorado has a law (PHEW) that states workers have a right to use their own PPE if it:
1. provides more protection that equipment provided at the workplace;
2. is recommended by a government health agency; and
3. does not make the worker unable to do the job

If you tried to do something like using the PAPR in the OR you'd get shut down for IP reasons, but otherwise, you'd be good to go in CO.
 

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