CAPPEM fully supports OHA directives to fight Omicron

CAMBRIDGE, Ontario, Dec. 16, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- With the high level of uncertainty over the effects of the newest COVID-19 variant Omicron, the Canadian Association of PPE Manufacturers (CAPPEM) fully supports the Ontario Hospital Association’s (OHA) newest recommendations issued yesterday evening.

According to the OHA, which has also issued a letter to the Ontario Ministry of Health urging stronger emergency response to the latest wave of the pandemic, any healthcare workers (including those in long term care homes) who are dealing with a confirmed or potential COVID-19 case should be wearing at minimum an N95 respirator.

Recently updated Public Health Ontario guidance now recommends that health care and environmental workers wear a fit-tested and seal-checked N95 respirator when caring for or entering and cleaning the room of patients with suspected or confirmed cases of COVID-19.

Furthermore, the chief medical officer of health (CMOH) of Ontario, Dr. Kieran Moore, recently stated that there is a potential that Omicron can spread through the air, with Dr. Adalsteinn Brown of the Ontario COVID-19 Science Advisory Table noting that COVID-19 is an airborne disease at a recent press conference on Ontario’s latest case modelling. Dr. Brown advises Ontarians to wear the highest quality mask that they can access.

“The OHA’s recommendations are absolutely bang on,” says CAPPEM President Barry Hunt. “This latest variant is more transmissible and it is spreading like wildfire. Immediately, we need to protect our healthcare workers and the most vulnerable and, as quickly as possible, get this equipment into our schools, businesses and homes,” adds Mr. Hunt.

Accepting the OHA’s recommendations, Ontario can fully expect a surge in demand, and Canadian PPE producers are ready and able to ramp up production of some of the best PPE in the world to meet the needs across the province and throughout Canada.

“Thanks to investments by our government and a host of manufacturers, we are not only self-sufficient in critical PPE, we also have new, innovative products based on world-leading technologies that are BETTER than imported or old school products. No longer do we need to rely on unstable supply chains and volatile markets. We have locally produced equipment that is better, more reliable, and, in many cases, less expensive,” concludes Mr. Hunt.

For example, the Health Canada approved Pro+ mask made in Collingwood fits better and performs BETTER than a disposable 3M N95 and it lasts for 300 hours before it is RECYCLED. That means it is less expensive, more effective and environmentally friendly. Ultra-breathable products made with new nano fiber material produced in Cambridge can provide healthcare workers with the ultimate in comfort and protection.

CAPPEM was created to prepare us for the next pandemic. It’s here already. Its name is Omicron.

CAPPEM represents Canadian manufacturers of PPE including masks, respirators, medical gowns, surgical gloves, disinfectants, and more. Canadian PPE producers invested over $100 million and hired over 1,000 people in response to the pandemic.  

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