As a fifth wave of COVID-19 smacks the U.S. unexpectedly, PPE usage is on the rise. As a necessary component in stopping the spread of the SARS-CoV2 virus, PPE will be in high demand soon, and a necessary part of life for the foreseeable future.
Here’s how to avoid the deadly shortages of the early pandemic and stay prepared
Step 1: Know your Capacity In every business or organization, you will have three thresholds for PPE:
Conventional Capacity: your day-to-day business plan for PPE
Contingency Capacity: strategies used during anticipated PPE shortages
Crisis Capacity: strategies used when PPE is scarce and you cannot meet the utilization rate
Step 2: Plan Ahead
When COVID-19 cases begin to slow, don’t let down your guard. COVID-19 and PPE in general will be needed for the foreseeable future. Don’t begin to dismiss new COVID conventions just yet, either. Leave physical barriers, such as plastic and windows, in place aid PPE and protect when PPE is scarce. Plan orders ahead of time with the understanding that many of these materials are in high-demand.
Step 3: Activate Contingency Plans
If PPE does become scarce, it’s up to you to have a plan. Can you reduce in-person workers to conserve supplies? Can your employees provide their own PPE? Should you cancel all elective or nonessential in person activities? Depending on the activities being done y the wearer, mask and glove use may need to be extended past the recommended time/usage.
In shortages, remember to save N95 masks for healthcare workers. Use only what is medically necessary for your business needs. If you work in healthcare, the CDC has provided guidance on how to best extend PPE use to maximize supplies.
If you are a decision maker in regards to PPE purchases for your business, now is a crucial time to develop a plan to protect your employees and get ahead of the anticipated shortages. The CDC provides information to help you develop strategies that identify and extend PPE supplies. You can also speak with a representative at Global Sourcing to help you secure the right supplies needed to defend yourself against the upcoming infection wave.