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Medical workers in Pohang cry out for more surgical gowns
  • By Song Soo-youn
  • Published 2020.03.03 15:32
  • Updated 2020.03.03 18:32
  • comments 0

Healthcare workers treating patients with the new coronavirus (COVID-19) infection at a hospital in Pohang, North Gyeongsang Province, said they were suffering a shortage of surgical gowns, which they wear inside protective clothing.

The medical staff at Pohang Medical Center in a city 71 kilometers east of Daegu, the epicenter of the COVID-19 spread, urged doctors in other regions to send them second-hand surgical gowns.

Healthcare workers treating patients with the new coronavirus infection have to wear surgical gowns inside protective clothing.

The government designated Pohang Medical Center as a hospital exclusively treating COVID-19 patients. To reduce the chance of hospital transmissions, doctors and nurses wear Level-D protective clothing to treat the patients.

The airtight medical protective gear makes healthcare workers sweat all over the body. They have to change the clothing frequently to see many hospitalized patients. When they change protective clothing, they should change their innerwear, too.

Healthcare workers treating COVID-19 patients wear surgical gowns inside protective clothing because they are easy to change and move around. This is why Pohang Medical Center’s physicians requested for more surgical gowns.

“We put on surgical gowns mostly, and we’re short of those gowns,” an official at Pohang Medical Center said, Tuesday.

Doctors and nurses at the hospital reportedly wore torn patient gowns due to the shortage of surgical gowns.

An internal medicine specialist at the hospital asked for the help of other doctors.

“If your hospital plans to change surgical gowns, please send old ones to Pohang Medical Center,” he said in the message to doctors working at other hospitals. “Doctors and nurses should keep changing surgical gowns, but we have run out of them. We even pick up patient gowns to replace them.”

According to North Gyeongsang Province, 115 COVID-19 patients are hospitalized at Pohang Medical Center, but there are only 84 nurses.

Pohang City dispatched eight doctors, eight nurses, 10 volunteers from the Pohang Medical Association, and 24 administrative workforces to Pohang Medical Center.


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