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Ireland 'We should not be this low this quickly': TDs raise concerns over protective equipment shortage for healthcare workers

23:05  26 march  2020
23:05  26 march  2020 Source:   thejournal.ie

Builders to join the battle against coronavirus by giving heroes of the NHS their masks

  Builders to join the battle against coronavirus by giving heroes of the NHS their masks Shortages of protective kit for healthcare workers have prompted major concerns, with experts warning it has left some on the front line 'without the armour they need to defend themselves'.Shortages of protective kit for healthcare workers have prompted major concerns, with experts warning it has left some on the front line 'without the armour they need to defend themselves'.

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On Monday night, healthcare workers gathered outside the Kaiser Oakland hospital in Northern California to protest the lack of personal protective equipment which has forced them ' This is what it looks like in the ICU. Rows of brown bags each labeled with the name of a nurse or doctor,' she wrote.

  'We should not be this low this quickly': TDs raise concerns over protective equipment shortage for healthcare workers

“NO ONE SHOULD die in work because of not being protected,” Sinn Féin’s Louise O’Reilly told the Dáil today. In a marathon Dáil debate, set to go on until 11pm tonight, politicians are having their say on emergency legislation which is set to be passed later this evening. 

The legislation deals with issues such as a nationwide rent freeze, a ban on evictions, measures to allow the re-enlistment of former members to the Defence Forces, as well as retired health workers to be re-hired. 

Want to help?: Volunteer Ireland are looking for people to assist our communities' most vulnerable members during the coronavirus emergency. If you're interested in helping, click HERE 

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  Medics 'hiding' coronavirus protective equipment 'out of sheer desperation' Hospital staff are hiding personal protective equipment (PPE) during the coronavirus outbreak due to shortages on the NHS frontline, medics have claimed. Some workers are said to be going off sick because they fear the provisions are inadequate - with one doctor saying it seems "inevitable" they will contract COVID-19.Global shortages of the equipment medics and carers need to protect themselves against the virus have led to shortfalls in the UK.

'There are mounting concerns about the changes to the guidance on personal protective equipment (PPE), with a widespread perception among staff that the approach recommended by ' We know this is causing huge anxiety for frontline staff whose priority is to keep their patients and themselves safe.'

Cost should be the least significant factor when selecting proper eye protection equipment . What hazard will rubber gloves protect the hand from? Which class of protective hat provides high-voltage protection and is used by electrical workers ?

TDs have raised a number of issues of concern this afternoon, including construction sites and factories remaining open without social distancing being adhered to and the delays in testing the confusion among the public about the change in testing criteria. 

Dublin, Ireland. Government Buildings (the Irish Dail) on Kildare Street with security barrier raised. © Getty Dublin, Ireland. Government Buildings (the Irish Dail) on Kildare Street with security barrier raised. However, the shortage of personal protective equipment (PPE) for healthcare workers is an urgent concern that TDs are calling to be addressed urgently. A number of campaigns are underway calling for donations of equipment to Irish hospitals. O’Reilly acknowledged that there is a global shortage of PPE.

“We know the HSE is trying but let us be honest. We should not be this low this quickly. No one should die at work because of not being protected. When the stocks are short, the HSE must be honest and tell us and prioritise those who are most at risk.

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  Why the UK is struggling to scale up coronavirus testing With Britain’s hospital death toll from Covid-19 rising by 563 in a single day on Wednesday, Boris Johnson is facing mounting criticism over the government’s failure to put in a place an adequate testing regime to manage the crisis. With Britain’s hospital death toll from Covid-19 rising by 563 in a single day on Wednesday, Boris Johnson is facing mounting criticism over the government’s failure to put in a place an adequate testing regime to manage the crisis.

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“The situation is becoming more difficult as we wait for supplies of PPE to arrive, with 24% of those affected by this virus being healthcare workers. I know we are being told we have orders of PPE arriving, and that is most welcome. However, in the here and now, frontline healthcare workers are telling us there is a real shortage of PPE,” she said. 

Sinn Fein TD Louise O'Reilly © Brian Lawless/PA Wire/PA Images Sinn Fein TD Louise O'Reilly She highlighted that many hospitals are running their own campaigns, calling out for donations of equipment from companies or individuals. “I would urge anyone who has any such equipment to come forward and to donate it,” she said.

O’Reilly added:

We are all in this together but our healthcare workers are on the front line of this emergency. I urge the Government to secure a reliable domestic production line of various items of PPE so we can be assured we have a stable, steady and reliable supply of this vital equipment.

Irish people stand in solidarity to share applause for healthcare workers

  Irish people stand in solidarity to share applause for healthcare workers There were moving scenes on Thursday night as people across the world took to social media to share their support of healthcare workers. _________________________________________________________________

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What are some health concerns of working in cold temperatures? A cold environment challenges the worker in three ways: by air temperature, air movement (wind speed), and humidity (wetness). Protective clothing: Check section on “What should I know about personal protective equipment

Quite frankly, it’s an insult that legitimate concerns about low PPE stocks on the ground were disparaged by a senior HSE official in the Business Post on Sunday, who said that they were panicking.

DROGHEDA, IRELAND - 2020/01/25: Micheál Martin, the president of Fianna Fáil takes part during the demonstration. Following the murder and dismemberment of a 17 year old boy in the town of Drogheda, a rally was held in solidarity with the town against the ruthless gangs. Recent shootings have left the town feeling anxious, but the killing of a minor forced the town residents to act. Ireland is in the midst of a general election, which is just two weeks away. (Photo by Richard Wright/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images) © 2020 SOPA Images DROGHEDA, IRELAND - 2020/01/25: Micheál Martin, the president of Fianna Fáil takes part during the demonstration. Following the murder and dismemberment of a 17 year old boy in the town of Drogheda, a rally was held in solidarity with the town against the ruthless gangs. Recent shootings have left the town feeling anxious, but the killing of a minor forced the town residents to act. Ireland is in the midst of a general election, which is just two weeks away. (Photo by Richard Wright/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images) Fianna Fáil leader Micheál Martin said he has heard from doctors and nurses who have actually used their own money to purchase protection in hardware stores, while other TDs said some doctors were asking professions like hairdressers if they have any equipment that might be of use. 

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What the papers say – March 31

  What the papers say – March 31 Efforts to fight the coronavirus continue to dominate the papers on Tuesday.The Independent says NHS staff have been gagged from speaking about shortages of protective equipment as they battle the coronavirus on the front lines.

The weather should have . by this evening, shoudn't it? cleared up. Do you think the wind has . enough for us to go to sailing without any danger?

The health insurance landscape can be tricky to navigate. Here’s a start-to-finish guide to choosing the best plan for you and your family. If your employer offers health insurance and you wish to search for an alternative plan in the exchanges, you can. But plans in the marketplace are likely to cost a lot more.

MORE ON CORONAVIRUS:

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The full breakdown of Irish virus statistics (The Journal)

How the pandemic will end (The Atlantic)

How did Spain get its virus response so wrong? (The Guardian)

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The party’s health spokesperson Stephen Donnelly said he heard of one case where hospital staff had sufficient masks for only one of them to help three Covid-19 patients. He told the Dáil that clinicians have been told the new PPE will be landing on Sunday but won’t be available until Tuesday.

Meanwhile, Labour’s Duncan Smith expressed concern that they don’t have necessary PPE to carry out essential work on dental patients. Independent TD Catherine Connolly said the government should have clear answers on when the protective equipment will be available. “No more waffle and patronizing statements,” she said. 

Gallery: Ireland in the coronavirus crisis (Photo Services)

She admonished the government for not being open and transparent enough about the new measures. She said she supported the “draconian” legislation last week, though reluctantly, but said support from Opposition TDs needs to be matched by openness and candor in relation to facts.

As Spain battles virus, medics' unions hit out

  As Spain battles virus, medics' unions hit out As Spain battles virus, medics' unions hit out"We believe that Spain will have, at most, not more than a few diagnosed cases," Fernando Simon, the country's health emergency chief, told reporters.

Fianna Fáil’s Robert Troy raised concerns that employers have of availing of the wage subsidy scheme for workers, and questioned why businesses that have tax liabilities are not able to sign up.

He said theses businesses will be forced to lay people off. In order to avail of the scheme, a business must declare a 25% reduction in their income, which he states is a business declaring “insolvency”, which businesses won’t do.

He urged the government to continue to put the pressure on the insurance industry to honour the contracts that are not being paid out. On the issue of government loans for businesses, Troy said urging businesses to take out loans “when they are looking over the edge of a cliff” will not work, particularly where the interest on those loans are up to 7%. 

JAKARTA, INDONESIA - MARCH 26, 2020 : Workers complete the making of clothing for Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) for medical personnel in Jakarta, Indonesia, on March 26, 2020. As a result of the soaring number of cases of the spread of the corona virus (Covid-19) in several regions in Indonesia, it has limited the availability of PPE on the market. According to media reports, Indonesian authorities have urged citizens to avoid public gatherings, including religious activities, as a precautionary measure against the spread of coronavirus. The nation has 893 confirmed cases of SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus and 78 people have died from COVID-19.- PHOTOGRAPH BY Jefta Images / Barcroft Studios / Future Publishing (Photo credit should read Jefta Images/Barcroft Media via Getty Images) © Jefta Images / Barcroft Studios / Future Publishing JAKARTA, INDONESIA - MARCH 26, 2020 : Workers complete the making of clothing for Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) for medical personnel in Jakarta, Indonesia, on March 26, 2020. As a result of the soaring number of cases of the spread of the corona virus (Covid-19) in several regions in Indonesia, it has limited the availability of PPE on the market. According to media reports, Indonesian authorities have urged citizens to avoid public gatherings, including religious activities, as a precautionary measure against the spread of coronavirus. The nation has 893 confirmed cases of SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus and 78 people have died from COVID-19.- PHOTOGRAPH BY Jefta Images / Barcroft Studios / Future Publishing (Photo credit should read Jefta Images/Barcroft Media via Getty Images) Independent TD Denis Naughten questioned the pandemic payment and why those over 66 are not able to avail of it. Other TDs such as People Before Profit’s Bríd Smith and Sinn Féin’s Eoin Ó Broin spoke about the new rent measures. Smith said she welcomed that the government had moved on a rent freeze, despite calling in unconstitutional previously.

Meanwhile, Ó Broin said he welcomed the freeze, but said after this is all over, another problem will emerge where renters will have built up arrears on the rent owed, which is something that needs to be dealt with.

Catherine Connolly TD said it is not sustainable for renters to have to pay their arrears after three months, or for mortgage -holders not to have the deferred payment added to the end of the loan. 

Anyone who may have been in contact with a person who has COVID-19, is advised to contact HSE Live via 1850 24 1850 or on the HSE website here

If you are unwell with a cough, especially with respiratory symptoms (e.g. cough, high temperature, shortness of breath, difficulty breathing, fever) you should isolate yourself immediately and phone your GP

If you have a COVID-19 related travel query, you can call the dedicated advice centre on (01)613 1733.

Follow the government’s latest travel advice here

Trump Extends Social Distancing Guidelines Through End of April .
WASHINGTON — President Trump retreated Sunday from his desire to relax coronavirus guidelines by Easter, announcing instead that all Americans must continue to avoid nonessential travel, going to work, eating at bars and restaurants, or gathering in groups of more than 10 for at least another month and perhaps until June. WASHINGTON — President Trump retreated Sunday from his desire to relax coronavirus guidelines by Easter, announcing instead that all Americans must continue to avoid nonessential travel, going to work, eating at bars and restaurants, or gathering in groups of more than 10 for at least another month and perhaps until June.

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