Hospital demand for N95 masks at 17 times the norm, survey says

Hospitals should prepare for a demand for medical supplies as much as 17 times higher than normal,  a survey of 1,591 hospitals conducted by Premier suggests. 

The COVID-19 pandemic is causing a surge in demand of 17 times the normal rate for N95 masks, 8.6 times for face shields, six times for swabs, five times for isolation gowns and 3.3 times for surgical masks. 

The hospital respondents ranked supply of N95 masks as the top concern. The average hospital had 23 days of N95 inventory on hand, but those with active COVID-19 cases had an average of three days of inventory. 

While N95 masks remain a top priority, "backorders for surgical masks, isolation gowns, thermometers and disinfecting wipes are surging and quickly surpassing demand for N95s," according to Premier President Michael Alkire. 

The survey included hospitals from 40 states and was conducted from March 16-20. 

Read the full news release here.


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