Question 1. Where can we get more personal protective equipment (PPE)?
Answer 1. The government is addressing this. Ensure you are using your Personal Protective Equipment effectively and not wasting it unnecessarily. Use N95 masks only on people who require it. You should continue to try and source PPE via your usual channels and ensure you have a suitable quantity of PPE.
Q2. Due to shortage of PPE, including body pouches: What would you recommend for transfers from long-term care facilities (LTC) under the Expedited Death Response system if we do not have available body pouches?
A2. If you are unable to obtain body pouches from your regular supplier, you are urged to work with LTC facilities or other providers in your community to obtain supplies from wherever possible.
Q3. Do funeral homes and others in the bereavement sector have enough personal protective equipment (PPE)?
A3. We know that the bereavement sector will need more PPE as COVID-19 surges in Ontario, Canada and the world.
The BAO, has made this clear to the Ontario government and is very impressed with the government’s response to this unprecedented state of emergency. We know they are working hard to obtain and provide PPE to the bereavement sector. We also understand that there is huge demand for PPE at hospitals, clinics, nursing homes and the entire health care system.
Q4. What PPE practices are followed at cemeteries, funeral homes, crematoriums and by all bereavement sector operators and staff during COVID-19?
A4. The BAO’s previously posted Routine Practices in the Bereavement Care Setting covers this. Now, more than ever, vigilance on the use of personal protective equipment is needed.