Barnstable County Collecting PPE For Future Needs

HYANNIS – As the number of COVID-19 cases trend downward on Cape Cod, Barnstable County health officials are storing personal protective equipment in the event of a second surge of cases.

“Should there be an issue later on, it also means that we can make sure these things are available to our first responders and medical facilities,” said Barnstable County Department of Health and Environment Director Sean O’Brien.  

“The numbers that we have aren’t high, we’ll probably have around 10 to 15 thousand masks in storage if we get to that point. As it moves forward it’s good to have some storage available if we have a bump.”

Over the last month Barnstable County has seen greater numbers of PPE come into the region.

This includes back orders that were made in March when the state began to take safety precautions.

“We are still seeing things come from the Health and Medical Coordinating Coalition and through the Mass Department of public health,” said O’Brien.  

“We are also seeing things come through the Multi Agency Coordination Center and the MACC is still pretty busy with getting supplies and equipment out to everybody.”

O’Brien added that the county is seeing more vendors with available supplies and equipment.

He also noted that n-95 masks, which were difficult to obtain during the peak of the outbreak, are becoming available again as well.

County health officials are continuing to remind residents to take precautions and follow safety guidelines as Cape Cod begins to slowly reopen.

“We hit our peak and now we are climbing down,” said O’Brien.  

“What’s important is we still need to make sure we continue to social distance, wear masks, wash hands, use hand sanitizer, and stay home when we’re sick. If we can continue with that for a little while more I think as a county we will be in good shape.”

Hospitalization rates and the number of people in ICU’s are also decreasing on Cape Cod.  

The drive-thru testing facility at Cape Cod Community College remains active and saw 79 cars come through on Monday.

That brings the total number of cars to come through the site since its opening to 3,898.

The number of cars to come through the site does not exactly represent the number of people who have been tested.

O’Brien said that the drive-thru facility has extended its hours to include Saturday mornings.

He also gave praise to Cape Cod Healthcare for acting quickly and getting the site up as soon as possible.

About Luke Leitner

Luke Leitner grew up in Watertown Massachusetts and now lives in West Yarmouth on the Cape. He has been a part of the news team in the News Center since the spring of 2019. He studied business communications at Western New England University.
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