PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — We’ve been seeing very disturbing images from overburdened hospitals, especially in Italy and New York.
Dr. Tom Campbell, chairman of emergency medicine for Allegheny Health Network, says nothing like those scenes is playing out in the emergency rooms he oversees.
“Today, our volumes are actually a little less than usual,” Campbell said on Wednesday. “We’re taking care of our usual really ill patients with heart attacks and strokes. And some patients who likely have COVID-19 virus who are ill.
As for what’s happening in those hospitals in the hardest-hit areas?
“I’m hoping we can avoid it by being a place that started our social distancing early,” says Campbell.
He says they, nonetheless, are planning and practicing so they’re prepared if a surge in cases does come.
Campbell also says there is no shortage of personal protective equipment (PPE) for Allegheny Health Network employees.
“Today, everyone has the PPE we need to take care of these patients and not be in danger. We certainly worry about what the future would bring if we get a surge. But we’re keeping an eye daily on the amount of supplies we have in our stocks, and I’m feeling comfortable that we’re good for right now,” Campbell says.
To make sure they’ll be well-supplied into the future, Campbell says AHN is about to begin using a new disinfection protocol developed at Duke University that allows the safe re-use of certain gear.