Global penetrance of COVID-19 has placed significant stress on the ability to produce and supply appropriate PPE to health care workers. Additionally, the risk pool of known and unknown disease in our communities has greatly challenged our ability to reliably determine patients who are at low risk. For these reasons, ACEP has and will continue to support the use of surgical masks with proper eyewear and other protective equipment for physicians and other individuals caring for patients, regardless of their complaint. Processes and procedures that create higher risk, such as close contact and aerosolizing procedures, require full PPE, including N95s.
Because the inadequate PPE supply increases the risk to our physicians, they have taken to buying their own PPE or utilizing donations from other industries. ACEP urges hospitals and other health care facilities to allow physicians to use their donated or self-purchased PPE.