California: Hospitals admit employees with COVID-19

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US hospitals admit employees with COVID-19.

As the cases of COVID-19 increase due to the high contagiousness of the Omicron variant, the California state health system is immersed in a deep personnel crisis and the authorities are forced to change the parameters of the protocol. For this reason, they now admit those health professionals who are asymptomatic to continue in their jobs.

The policy, which will be in effect until February 1, is intended to keep many health care workers on their jobs as hospitals expect more patients in the coming days, the Los Angeles Times reports.

“During this time, healthcare professionals who have tested positive for SARS-CoV-2 and are asymptomatic can return to work immediately without isolation and testing, and healthcare professionals who have been exposed and are asymptomatic can return to work immediately. to work immediately without quarantine and without tests,” says the resolution issued on January 8 by the California Department of Public Health (CDPH).

Likewise, the health authorities require these workers to use the N95 mask – the N designation means that it does not filter oils, and 95 that filters up to 95% of airborne particles.

If adapted to this new protocol, each establishment must verify that it has exhausted all instances to incorporate additional registration or contract personnel, as well as having considered modifications to non-essential procedures.

They suggest that health workers who have COVID-19 and are asymptomatic, care for patients suffering from the same disease

As recommended by the CDPH Guidance on Quarantine and Isolation for Health Personnel, those health professionals who are asymptomatic from COVID-19 should preferably be assigned to work with positive Coronavirus patients.

Meanwhile, hospitals and skilled nursing facilities (SNFs) must follow the updated risk assessment framework from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). to determine the risk of exposure of healthcare personnel with respect to patients, residents, visitors, and other colleague with confirmed COVID-19 in a healthcare setting.

California Healthcare Workers Raise Concerns Over New State COVID-19 ProtocolsThe California Department of Public Health now says health care worker that test positive for COVID-19 can return to work immediately if they have no symptoms. Marianne Favro reports. Stay connected: Follow us on Twitter: Like us on Facebook: Follow us on Instagram: Follow us on TikTok: Catch up on all…2022-01-09T07:38:20Z

“The situation feels so desperate,” Erin McIntosh, a rapid response nurse at Riverside Community Hospital, told the Los Angeles Times. He added: “I entered health care wanting to help people, but now I am the vector. Someone comes to me in their time of need, and could potentially be passing COVID to them.”

McIntosh told the aforementioned outlet on Monday that more than 300 nurses and many other hospital staff are sick due to COVID-19, and that those who remain are on the brink of the abyss.

The announcement by California health authorities was met with outrage by many in the health industry, while others see it as a stopgap to prevent the collapse of the health system.

Faced with the emergency measure ordered by the CDPH, Rosanna Méndez, executive director of SEIU 121RN – a union that represents health workers in southern California -, opined that the decision is “irresponsible and a big mistake that will put endanger everyone’s health.”

“This plan is unscientific and dangerous, and given what we know about the transmissibility of the new variant, we believe it will put health care workers and patients at unnecessary risk,” Méndez told the Los Angeles Times. .

In contrast, other experts consider that the policy, although not perfect, is a necessary stopgap to prevent the system from collapsing. “Is it the ideal situation? No,” analyzed Dr. Robert-Kim Farley, an epidemiologist and infectious disease expert at the UCLA Fielding School of Public Health, during a contact with the same news outlet.

And he concluded: “Is it the lesser of the two evils of not having anyone to care for patients, versus having staff to care for them who may have COVID? Yes, it is the lesser of two evils.

Do you agree with the measure adopted by the California authorities against the advance of the Omicron variant of COVID-19?

READ MORE: WHO warning: How long should a COVID-19 positive be isolated?

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