HARRISBURG, DAUPHIN COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU-TV) – Governor Tom Wolf on Wednesday signed an order aiming to provide personal protective equipment and other supplies to hospitals across the commonwealth.
The order mandates that all healthcare providers, facilities, as well as manufacturers, distributors and suppliers of PPE, pharmaceuticals and other medical resources located within Pennsylvania submit current inventory quantities of medical resources to the Pennsylvania Emergency Management Agency (PEMA) within five days of Wednesday’s order.
PEMA will then “make arrangements with other commonwealth agencies to reimburse facilities for PPE and other supplies and equipment, then arrange for supplies to be allocated to where they are needed most”, according to a press release.
“Combatting a pandemic means we all have to work together and that means we need to make the best use of our medical assets to ensure the places that need them most have them,” Wolf said in a statement. “Today, I am signing an order that will allow us to transfer supplies and information between medical facilities to both high-population, high-impact areas and lower-population areas that might not have as many existing medical resources.
“This will also prevent sick Pennsylvanians from having to choose which hospital to go to for fear that some have less access to equipment than others and it will help us make use of every ventilator, every piece of PPE, and every medical worker.”
The governor says the order will ensure the efficient allocation and effective use of critical medical resources, such as N95 face masks, ventilators, respirators, face shields, safety goggles, disinfectants and other sanitizing solutions by hospitals in the state.
The Department of Health also launched a new hospital preparedness dashboard Wednesday that provides county-level information, including the number of available beds and ventilators in use at facilities across the state.