What PPE/precautions are you taking for H1N1?

Nurses COVID

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I did a search but was not able to find a post with this information in it. I am a new nurse and just started working at a small community hospital in the ER. So far I have been surprised by the volume of pts that we see. I would like to get an idea of what is being done or not done in other places regarding the H1N1 flu. I have not seen a whole lot of concern from coworkers regarding wearing PPE. I am aware that in most cases it is still mild but, I am concerned for later in the fall when it may become more severe.

I am wondering what your facilities are recommending for suspected flu cases and/or confirmed Flu A positive? What PPE are you wearing? Do you have clear guidelines to follow or is it left to your disgression? When do you decide to wear it? Are pts being seperated for flu symptoms vs. other problems?

I have been reading on allnurses for quite some time and appreciate all of the insight and information posted. Thanks in advance for your input.

indigo girl

5,173 Posts

Specializes in Too many to list.

The precautions that you need to take should be guided by your ID people. If there is any question, I would be talking to them

about this for your own safety.

CDC says N95 masks are to be used with flu patients, and this is what my hospital is using. There are also special precautions recommended for pregnant HCW that your staff should be aware of.

Good luck to you this fall. I hope that all will be well for you and your staff. I am glad that I do not work ER. Bless you!

amwhit

30 Posts

Thanks for your response. I have read the recommendations from CDC as well and have an appointment with my hospital's infection control dept for clarification. I just want to make sure that my coworkers and I are doing everything that we should to protect ourselves and our patients.

It seems to me that so far many people are still not taking this as serious as I think they should. Again, thanks for your response.

indigo girl

5,173 Posts

Specializes in Too many to list.

Be sure to ask about pregnant workers. This is something that they are not likely to be thinking about but should be. If they are not interested then maybe risk management would be. There may be law suits later if a staff member dies or loses a pregnancy...

http://www.cdc.gov/h1n1flu/guidance/pregnant-hcw-educators.htm

Again, good luck to you.

NurseMac

10 Posts

Thanks for asking this question because I am also wondering if I'm doing all I should re: swine flu.

I am a nurse who had a patient with swine flu last week. I took the patient because my coworker was pregnant and I didn't want her to have to risk exposure.

We were instructed to gown, glove, and wear face masks while in the patient's room and to keep the door closed at all times. Basically we followed droplet precautions. (The face masks were N95 particulate filter respirators - the type we would wear for a TB patient). We did not keep a mask on the patient. He was in dementia and only restraints would have stopped him from pulling off the mask anyway - and we were not about to keep him restrained.

I too would like to know whether droplet precautions and an N95 mask are all that are necessary or should we have done more?

We have not had the swine flu vaccination yet at my hospital - although I have not heard that anyone has had it yet. However, we are already getting swine flu patients.

indigo girl

5,173 Posts

Specializes in Too many to list.

Bless you, NurseMac for switching with your pregnant co-worker. We all need to do this.

You can check this other thread for PPE info and comments:

https://allnurses.com/pandemic-flu-forum/you-using-right-412758.html

allnurses Guide

herring_RN, ASN, BSN

3,651 Posts

Specializes in Critical care, tele, Medical-Surgical.

Infnurse

10 Posts

I should have worn eye shield or goggles, if th epatient was really ill and coughing and so on

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