Shortage of protective gear is a hurdle for Ebola preparedness

Ebola Biosafety_level_4_hazmat_suit - Public Domain

Access to more specialized hospital gear and internal and external communications should be improved, doctors told a state task force on Ebola on Thursday.

A panel of doctors from hospitals across the state testified that there is a shortage of specialized personal protective equipment used by health care providers to treat Ebola. The demand is high in part because smaller hospitals are preparing.

“Manufacturers just don’t have the supply to fulfill all the orders,” said William Sutker, chief of infectious disease at Baylor Medical Center in Dallas. “All hospitals and hospital systems are trying to obtain the same type of material.”

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