In a memo to staff late Monday afternoon, Maui Memorial Health Center executives Mike Rembis and Debbie Walsh reversed a controversial policy, reported by MauiTime Saturday, that prevented health personnel from wearing masks in hospital common areas, such as nursing stations, hallways and elevators, even if they brought their own. At issue was the use of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), such as masks, goggles and gowns, when supplies are currently tight throughout the state.
“Effective immediately, Maui Health employees and providers are allowed to wear their own masks,” a memo to staff explained. “Should they choose, clinicians and staff may use their own personal masks in their work setting.” The memo added, “homemade masks that have been donated by the community will be made available in the lobby areas for clinician and staff usage for as long as there is supply on hand. Donated masks should be used at the employee’s own risk/discretion.”
The hospital’s previous policy had raised complaints from health workers, and prompted a letter from a statewide doctors’ group asking that hospital employees be allowed to use their own PPEs “at any time.”
Photo by H Shaw