Nurses Report Hoarding, Theft Of Protective Gear Amid Coronavirus Outbreak

CLEVELAND (CBSLA) — Nurses in Ohio are reporting hoarding and even outright theft of protective gear amid the coronavirus outbreak.

Personal protective equipment, like gloves, masks and gowns are at the top of the list of concerns, according to Ohio Nurses Association (ONA) President Deborah Arms.

“We know that there’s a limited supply of this right now and so we at ONA are very concerned that when this virus peaks that we have enough of this equipment for our nurses to take care of our patients properly,” she told WEWS.

And there are reports that some equipment is missing.

“We know there is some hoarding going on,” she said. “We know there is some stealing of masks going on.”

The Cleveland Clinic reports it has not witnessed hoarding or theft issues, while University Hospitals says “supplies are tight” and it “has taken measures to secure key supplies.”

A representative for the MetroHealth system said he is not aware of any thefts of equipment.

“We have ramped up our inventory control but have no incidents,” said Mike Tobin, MetroHealth’s Vice President of Communications, Government and Community Relations.