“It almost appears D.C. government is playing Russian Roulette with the nurses and other health care workers at St. Elizabeth’s,” said District of Columbia Nurses Association Executive Director Edward Smith yesterday. With four patient deaths in the last three weeks, 30 nurses out on quarantine and coronavirus cases expected to spike in the next few weeks, DCNA wants changes in protocols to guarantee nurses will be tested immediately if they treat a COVID–19 patient. DCNA is also concerned about the lack of negative pressure rooms at St. Elizabeths as well as the availability of Personal Protection Equipment (PPE). “We simply need more N-95 masks at St. Elizabeths and other health care facilities in D.C.,” said Smith. “It’s all about safety first, saving nurses’ lives, protecting their families, and administering the care required by corona virus patients.”
See also: Nurses Strain Under Extra Work Because Of COVID-19 Testing Protocols (WAMU)
photo: Nurse Susan Nelson Pierre (l) works at Saint Elizabeths Hospital; photo courtesy DCNA
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