OLYMPIA,WA- The State of Washington is seeing a shortage in coronavirus test and essential medical equipment needed to assist those who are in need. 

Local and state officials and leaders have contacted the federal government for assistance to get more equipment to the state. 

“My staff and I have had ongoing conversations with Vice President Pence and others in the federal government about PPE,” Gov. Jay Inslee said. “They have been helpful in addressing our requests and getting us resources. We will continue to push for more until Washington state has all the tools it needs to protect healthcare workers and first responders.”

DOH has filled more than 50 requests for personal protective equipment (PPE). This includes:

  • 72,930 surgical gowns
  • 6,350 protective face/eye shields
  • More than 145,000 N-95 respirators
  • 238,560 surgical/procedure masks
  • More than 100,000 gloves

The state department of health said the reason for the shortage is the supply inventory is in high demand where things are not in stock due to the panic of the coronavirus outbreak. 

“The Department of Health appreciates our federal partner’s efforts to meet our needs for PPE throughout this response through the Strategic National Stockpile,” said Clark Halvorson, Assistant Secretary of Health for Public Health Emergency Preparedness and Response. “This support however falls far short of meeting the needs of our medical system, first responders, public health, and care facilities — forcing us to prioritize requests based on greatest need. Because of the intense demand for PPE during this outbreak, the Department of Health is partnering with the Emergency Management Division and Department of Enterprise Services to identify other sources of the critical equipment needed across the state.”

DOH and the Governor’s Office were told Friday that the U.S.Department of Health and Human Services will provide care and services through other supplies to fill the needs. 

For more information on COVID-19, please visit the Department of Health’s website. DOH is asking health care organizations to review the recently updated CDC guidance on PPE.

Always remember the DOH has a call center to answer questions just call 1-800-525-0127 and press #.

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