A physician from Florida Atlantic University’s Schmidt College of Medicine and collaborators from the University of Arizona College of Medicine-Tucson and the Indiana University School of Medicine conducted a novel training technique to reinforce the importance of using proper procedures to put on and take off PPE when caring for patients during the pandemic.
Researchers were able to vividly demonstrate how aerosol-generating procedures can lead to exposure of the contagion with improper use of PPE.For the experiment, published in the journal Medical Education, the researchers instructed health care staff to put on PPE, which included a cap, gown, surgical gloves, eye protection, face shield and N95 mask. After health care staff in the study put on their PPE, they went in to a room to care for a simulated patient sprayed down with the invisible simulated contagion.
After completing the simulated case, the health care staff remained in their PPE and were taken to another room, where the lights were turned off prior to removing their PPE.
Turning off the lights enabled the identification of widespread simulated contagion on the PPE, both on the gloves and gowns from directly touching the simulated patient and on the face shields and masks from the aerosolized solution. The researchers used a black light flashlight to examine each health care worker and to identify the presence of any fluorescent solution.
Following the flashlight examination, the health care staff completely removed their PPE.
Researchers discovered the presence of fluorescent solution on the health care staff’s skin, which represented an exposure to the contagion and indicated that they made an error while putting on or taking off their PPE. This training method allows educators and learners to easily visualize any contamination on themselves after they fully remove their personal protective equipment.
This experiment demonstrated that following PPE training improves workplace safety and decreases the risk of transmission.
This simulation-based approach provides an efficient, low-cost solution that can be implemented in any hospital.
Here in Spain, it comes very late, because it is the country with the most health personnel contaminated with the virus.