Earlier this week, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) announced that all healthcare professionals taking care of Ebola patients should be wearing personal protective equipment (PPE) that does not expose any skin. This would include wearing a full face shield instead of goggles, and a surgical hood that covers the head and neck entirely.
It was not so long ago that the guidelines for PPE said a small degree of skin exposure would be permitted – but after two nurses at a hospital in Dallas contracted the virus, the need to step up personal protection was imminent. As such, these guidelines have been revised to include the above changes, as well as a replacement of masks with a N95 respirator or a powered air purifying respirator. This hopes to provide more protective measurers against aerosol contaminants, such as blood or sputum.
Lastly, the CDC is also recommending that clinicians should train and demonstrate the competency of both putting on and taking of PPE very rigorously – for if it is not carried out properly, it puts the clinician at a substantial risk for contamination.