Nebraska Medicine using UV light to decontaminate 500 face masks a day

The outbreak of coronavirus (COVID-19) has led to a national shortage of personable protective equipment for medical workers.
Uv Lights

The outbreak of coronavirus (COVID-19) has led to a national shortage of personable protective equipment for medical workers.

Nebraska Medicine recently rolled out a new method to safely decontaminate those items – most of which are made for only one use – so that they can be used repeatedly.

A Nebraska Medicine team is using ultraviolet light towers to irradiate masks, which will greatly extend its supply during the coronavirus pandemic.

The masks are bagged and taken to a room inside the hospital which is equipped with two UV light towers. It is then hung on wires that stretch across the room. The lights are then turned on, decontaminating the items.

Since implementing the new method on March 19, Nebraska Medicine has successfully decontaminated approximately 5,000 face masks – about 500 per day. A spokesman said that number is growing daily as more units and clinics take part.

Staff have been provided with instructions on how to safely remove their PPE and place in bags for transport to the decontamination room.

 

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