Over the past few months, we’ve watched the medical sector grapple not only with containing COVID-19, but also the ripple of effects that came with it. One of those is, of course, the shortage of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE). Front line employees all over the world have braved the dangers of caring for their patients even in compromised, re-used PPE. This raises the need for reusable PPEs.
Why Reusable PPE is Better Than Disposable Options
But are reusable PPEs a good enough substitute over disposable ones? It might come as a shock to some, but there are actually good reasons to make the switch.
Here are some of them:
The last few months have shown the direct environmental impact of having to cope with a pandemic. The drastic rise in the use of disposable PPEs on the global scale have caused problems when it comes to waste and pollution. The end is nowhere near in sight unless we make the switch to reusable PPEs. Reusable PPE’s provide the same amount of protection without aggravating the problem of waste. Before they need to be thrown away for good, they will have fifty, maybe a hundred more usages compared to their disposable counterparts.
It does not take much to understand the issue with PPE shortages. The world has used PPEs faster than manufacturers can supply them, and the usage capacity of a single PPE unit is not helping. Reusable PPEs make sense. Laundering them is faster, easier, and cheaper even when the laundry methods are done twice more than normal to accommodate the special requirements for reusable PPEs.
Reusable PPEs are cheaper per use than disposable ones, so each dollar goes farther.
The Hygiene Issue
One of the biggest concerns with reusable PPEs in healthcare is hygiene. Their type and level of exposure are, of course, cause for concern. When options exist that are designed to be landfilled, what business do we have trying to wash them?
But there are safe ways to go about these things. As many medical laundry service experts have proven, safe PPEs are a good, acceptable alternative to unsustainable PPEs. Three things need to be checked off for this to happen:
Certain materials, coupled with the right design, offer adequate protection for the wearer. Most importantly, some materials are easier to treat and disinfect, making it possible for reusable PPEs.
Most cases of cross-contamination occur not from being compromised while the PPE suits are worn; they usually occur in post-exposure handling – an issue that’s true and possible for most every type of medical linen, not just with PPEs. Proper removal, containment, and handling of reusable PPEs after each use is crucial to prevent contamination.
It goes without saying that laundry is going to play a crucial role in the safety and viability of reusable PPE use. Even the already highly secure medical laundry services need to be tighter and stricter to meet the tougher challenges.
Unitex is Your Premier Choice for Top-Notch Reusable PPEs
With proper usage and even better post-use handling, reusable PPEs can make a massive impact not only in our pandemic response measures but for the future of the healthcare sector.
And the right reusable PPE supplier and laundry care provider can make all the difference. Reusable PPEs and their handling and laundering need to be carried out by an already established expert in high-level medical linen care – and ideally one that is not afraid of rising up to these new challenges. That provider is Unitex!
Contact Unitex Today
For more information on our outstanding medical linen, uniform, and laundry services, contact us at (914) 840-3200.