ADAMS COUNTY, Colo. — In Adams County, a new system of mobile units will be able to decontaminate up to 80,000 N95 respirators per day, according to the Colorado Hospital Association (CHA).
Decontamination is free and available to all healthcare personnel both on and off the frontlines of the COVID-19 pandemic.
>Complete this form to enroll in the Battelle Critical Care Decontamination System.
Julie Lonborg of the CHA called the current Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) supply chain "interrupted" and "unreliable".
"Anything we can do right now to help ensure a long-term supply of hospital-grade PPE is critical," she said.
On its website, the CDC said "decontamination and reuse" of respirators like N95 masks "may be needed during times of shortage."
Colorado and Adams County worked quickly to acquire one of these systems to address the need.
"People often joke about red tape and government working slowly. Well, in about four days, we were able to make not only the paperwork happen but get this building upgraded," Deputy Adams County Manager Jim Siedlecki told 9NEWS.
On Thursday, the first of seven mobile decontamination units arrived at the fairgrounds of Riverdale Regional Park.
All seven will be moved inside the exhibit hall where they will decontaminate PPE using a "concentrated, vapor phase hydrogen peroxide."
Siedlecki said he expects the site will begin decontamination procedures by early next week.
The state said a single respirator can be "reused up to 20 times without degradation."
Lonborg said she believes the system will be of most use to smaller and rural Colorado healthcare systems as many larger systems have their own decontamination protocols in place.
According to Siedlecki, FEMA has a six-month lease for the site with a three-month option on the back end.
The state is working on securing a second system.
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