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PPE concerns as we return

Posted

Specializes in ICU/community health/school nursing. Has 12 years experience.

I've had the opportunity to attend some DYNAMITE Zoom/remote conferences during this time. So, here's what I worry about for fall (because I really hope we're back in the fall!)

We will need PPE for what I call the viral rebound (and realistically for flu season).

We will need to put masks on anyone who's coughing (in case). Surgical would be best. Cloth won't do much.

We will need some kind of PPE to don, just in case. Surgical masks and a full face shield (reusable, cleanable) will likely do it for us. N95s would be a dream but still you'd need goggles/eye protection.

NOW - where are we getting all these things?? My budget at the elementary was $150. For the year. For 600 bebes.

BettyGirard, BSN

Specializes in School Nurse.

I've requested N95/face shields. How this would be administered depends much on whether there ends up being any quick tests for COVID available. Either way, we'd isolate a kid and use full PPE until determining by test (or if not available, simple temperature and other signs).

CanIcallmymom, BSN, RN

Specializes in school nursing. Has 6 years experience.

I have the same concerns. I would like a gown, N95, and face shield as well. But that's a lot of money when all is said and done. Our school asked us how many gloves we foresee using a week and mentioned trying to find masks, but I just don't see it happening--which I'm not sure how I feel about it.

BettyGirard, BSN

Specializes in School Nurse.

Gloves I have. I didn't have any masks or isolation gowns when we shut down. I'm hoping the supplies won't be as hard to come by when we open back up. They're still saying May 15 but the latest article I read here says that the peak isn't projected now until mid-June. Hopefully, we'll have to August to resolve this, but I have to be prepared either way.

Flare, ASN, BSN

Specializes in school nursing, ortho, trauma.

my supt and I discussed giving my cache of supplies to the effort collecting for hospitals. At the end of the day he collected all of the face shields and gloves from other departments and left my stuff alone. I didn't have an abundance anyhow. But we discussed last week about how the office will manage when we get back. It can't be business as usual. A student (or staff member, for that matter) presenting with a cough and fever has to be treated like they may have covid. This means isolation in the office until picked up and then thorough cleaning. We have the electrostatic sanitizers, so that should be a pretty quick task. But this also means that not only is my office unavailable, but I am as well. We had a serious discussion about hiring a second RN. Maybe it'll actually go somewhere this time.

But to get back to the original point, school's shouldn't reopen until they can safely care for potentially infected individuals. I think I got an email last week from school heath saying that they have supplies. If you're looking that's where I'd start.

Good luck to all my SN virtual co-workers. We're (still) all in this together.

BrisketRN, BSN, RN

Has 4 years experience.

My principal is asking me how many surgical masks and N95 masks I'd need when we return to school. Private school, parent company is looking into supplying. I honestly have no idea. I previously had a box of 50 surgical masks that was never touched until COVID.

scuba nurse, BSN, MSN, RN

Specializes in School Nursing, Pediatrics. Has 31 years experience.

we had to donate all our supplies of gloves , masks, wipes, and our thermometers, and O2 sensors to our local city. we have none of these supplies and will need a ton of them in order to open in the fall. my district has 45 schools and over 25 k students. I hope they fix the budget for the this!

k1p1ssk, BSN, RN

Specializes in pediatrics. Has 10 years experience.

Who supplies PPE for outside contractors at your school? We have a nurse who is hired by the student's family who provides care during the day. Is she responsible to provide her own PPE for caring for that student, or is the district?

BettyGirard, BSN

Specializes in School Nurse.

Her "employer" is required by law to provide it. It would very much depend on what the contractual arrangements are.

amoLucia

Specializes in LTC.

to k1p1 & Betty - what happens if 'pvt nurse' calls out? Who then is resp for care, esp on short notice? What if nurse or student becomes ill mid-day?

What a 'sticky wicket" for you guys!!

As always, my respect for y'all. Stay safe. Stay strong.

BettyGirard, BSN

Specializes in School Nurse.

Again, it would depend on just who the employer is. It's not very common that the patient contracts directly with the nurse.

k1p1ssk, BSN, RN

Specializes in pediatrics. Has 10 years experience.

23 hours ago, amoLucia said:

to k1p1 & Betty - what happens if 'pvt nurse' calls out? Who then is resp for care, esp on short notice? What if nurse or student becomes ill mid-day?

What a 'sticky wicket" for you guys!!

As always, my respect for y'all. Stay safe. Stay strong.

Our situation is unique as there are siblings in the district who both have 1:1 nurses and instructional aides. The family is doing the district a solid and paying for one of the two nurses. If the nurse is sick, the student doesn't come to school unless a sub is found. If the student is sick, that nurse doesn't come to the school, and usually provides homecare; However, the district provided nurse would remain at the school and help the office nurse or has to take a sick day herself.

Edited by k1p1ssk

SandIsMyGlitterRN, BSN, RN

Specializes in School Nursing. Has 21 years experience.

What are your plans for isolating students that are possibly contagious with COVID when students that need ice, meds, bandage, etc. come in to the office??? My space is very small. Worried about how I will handle this.

BrisketRN, BSN, RN

Has 4 years experience.

17 minutes ago, SandIsMyGlitterRN said:

What are your plans for isolating students that are possibly contagious with COVID when students that need ice, meds, bandage, etc. come in to the office??? My space is very small. Worried about how I will handle this.

We have been told we will need to have a designated COVID area. Possibly a conference room, an unused classroom/office, rearrange people so there's an open office, heck even a large closet.

ruby_jane, BSN, RN

Specializes in ICU/community health/school nursing. Has 12 years experience.

On 4/30/2020 at 9:11 AM, BrisketRN said:

We have been told we will need to have a designated COVID area. Possibly a conference room, an unused classroom/office, rearrange people so there's an open office, heck even a large closet.

In the Ebola Days, the Ebola confinement area would have been the bathroom. Not the best idea. In my clinic I think I have six feet from door to door and another six feet from the cabinet area to the back wall. No confinement space except the bathroom....

SaltineQueen

Specializes in School Nurse, past Med Surge.

On 4/30/2020 at 10:11 AM, BrisketRN said:

We have been told we will need to have a designated COVID area. Possibly a conference room, an unused classroom/office, rearrange people so there's an open office, heck even a large closet.

Have you seen the NASN publication that just came out this past week? It suggests an isolation area preferably with negative pressure. I laughed and laughed! I don’t see how that’s going to be possible for my situation. There is no where to put an isolation area without major renovation.

k1p1ssk, BSN, RN

Specializes in pediatrics. Has 10 years experience.

On 5/2/2020 at 8:06 AM, SaltineQueen said:

Have you seen the NASN publication that just came out this past week? It suggests an isolation area preferably with negative pressure. I laughed and laughed! I don’t see how that’s going to be possible for my situation. There is no where to put an isolation area without major renovation.

Or at least a window to the outside; My office is connected to the Principal's office, so she is likely going to have to give up her space at least temporarily if this is what the recommendations are!

Eleven011

Specializes in Home Health,Dialysis, MDS, School Nurse. Has 20+ years experience.

I just notified my admin that I have added to my budget request for next year to add masks, face shields, gowns and dedicated alcohol sanitizer station for my office. We have just finished building a new school, so a remodel for a quarantine room isn't going to happen, but I do have a fairly large room. I plan to put anyone coughing at the far end of the office, and then there is a privacy curtain I can pull also. It would be a good 8 feet away from anyone just coming in for a routine med, or bandaid. I guess we do what we can!