Coronavirus: Alternative measures in place as KZN faces mask shortage

Coronavirus: Alternative measures in place as KZN faces mask shortage

The KwaZulu-Natal Health Department has stressed that healthcare workers at public hospitals are not being asked to reuse their protective face masks. 

Health MEC Nomagugu Simelane-Zulu coronavirus

Medical facilities are facing a supply shortage of the N95 protective equipment - as the world fights to contain the stem the spread of the coronavirus pandemic. 

"This is a shortage that is faced not just by the province of KwaZulu-Natal, it's a shortage that is faced by the world. We have alternatives, and some of our staff have been given alternative masks, and no one has been told to reuse a mask," says Health MEC Nomagugu Simelane-Zulu. 

Simelane-Zulu was asked to speak about the issue at a press briefing in Durban yesterday. 

She was joined by Premier, Sihle Zikalala who outlined the measures to be put in place, ahead of the national coronavirus lockdown. 

READ: eThekwini tops coronavirus infections in KZN

Non-essential workers and their families have been asked to stay at home for 21 days, from midnight tomorrow. 

The MEC says they have ordered more masks and other protective equipment. 

"We were going to have a challenge in relation to the replenishment of the masks. Our protective gear, which we started ordering early March, late February - some have started coming in."

"They are being delivered; it's just that we didn't get the delivery and masks as we have requested, but we do have supplies, and we have ordered more just in case we don't run out."

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