'#GetMePPE': Clinicians turn to social media to plead for masks, gowns

Facing severe shortages in necessary personal protective equipment such as masks, surgical gowns and face shields, physicians and nurses are now campaigning on social media for more supplies from the government and the public, The New York Times reports.

Many of these medical professionals are reportedly using the hashtag "#GetMePPE" as a rallying cry. They have requested that government officials either find ways to direct more supplies to hospitals in need or offer incentives for companies to ramp up production of the needed supplies, as well as sanitizer wipes to clean them.

They are also asking people who stocked up on face masks but do not need them to donate their stockpiles to healthcare providers. The World Health Organization and the CDC have repeatedly informed the public that masks will not necessarily protect them from contracting COVID-19, and should therefore be reserved for patients who have tested positive for the disease and the healthcare professionals treating them.

"I would like to say there's some major happy ending where a cowboy comes in with a ton of masks and we're saved, but I don't see that happening anytime soon," Charnai Prefontaine, an Illinois-based ICU nurse, told the Times. "I think it's going to get worse before it gets better."

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