Nurses at Hackley Hospital told not to wear their own protective masks

Grant Boone
March 24, 2020

"As I write this, more than 500,000 respirators are on the way from our South Dakota plant to two of the more critically impacted areas, NY and Seattle, with arrivals expected starting tomorrow", 3M Chairman and CEO Mike Roman wrote on the company's website Sunday night.

Roman's comments came one day after 3M said it is sending to NY and Seattle a half-million N95 respirator masks in response to the ongoing shortage of health-care equipment.

"It's disappointing when you see that because we're trying to redirect everything to health-care workers", Roman said on CNBC's "Squawk on the Street". Roman said some 350,000 should arrive in NY on Monday. At the end of January, 3M said it was "ramping to full production" and "going 24/7" in N95 production.

Before Sunday, news reports and video showed a Target in Seattle with shelves full of the N95s.

"There was some inventory, as you would expect, throughout the supply chain from what was happening even as we came into 2020", according to Roman.

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"Never in my nursing career have I ever been told to reuse an N95 mask", she said. Of those masks that were domestically produced, more than 90% are designated together with the remainder slated for critical sectors, such as pharmaceuticals, food, and energy, according to the note.

Washington Governor Jay Inslee was alerted to the masks being sold at Target on Saturday, again through Twitter, explaining that his staff stepped in to get them to health care workers who need them.

"All of that allowed us to shift what are normally industrial respirators, the N95, over to healthcare workers". We're also working on sourcing millions of more to donate. "Nurses are putting our health and safety on the line every day during this pandemic, and it's not OK to deny us the protection we need".

There's a rising concern for health care professionals across the country and nurses got the news this weekend they can not wear donated N95 masks. "We are also ready to expedite additional shipments across the country".

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