A consignment of 900,000 isolation gowns (PPE) from China has received by the Health Service Executive of Ireland, representing just 12½ days’ of stock based on current demand.
The consignment arrived in Shannon Airport on Wednesday and follows a delivery of 100,000 gowns earlier this week.
Meanwhile, a study published in The British Medical Journal has found that hundreds of frontline healthcare professionals who were at high risk of exposure to Covid-19 did not contract the infection or develop immunity to it.
They recommended that Healthcare systems “must give priority to the procurement and distribution of PPE, and provide adequate training to healthcare professionals in its use.”
Researchers from Sun Yat-sen University, China, and University of Birmingham, UK, examined the protective effects of appropriate PPE for frontline healthcare professionals during the pandemic.
Their findings are based on 420 doctors and nurses with an average age of 36 years deployed to Wuhan for six to eight weeks from January to April caring for patients with Covid-19.
All participants were provided appropriate protective equipment, including suits, masks, gloves, goggles, face shields and gowns with proper training in the correct use of PPE and in reducing their exposure to infection when caring for patients.
None of the participants reported Covid-19 related symptoms and all tested negative for the infection or its antibodies when returned home.
In Ireland the Government is stockpiling PPE in anticipation of a second wave of Covid-19, Taoiseach Leo Varadkar said.
“A second wave, or spike in Covid-19 cases, or indeed another type of virus is possible, and it is important to be prepared”, he added.