Updated: May 20, 2020 08:03 AM
Created: May 20, 2020 05:48 AM
In response to a lack of protective gear, members of the Minnesota Nurses Association are set to rally Wednesday at the Capitol.
The nurses are demanding equipment, training, staffing and more transparency from hospitals. Petitioners will deliver those demands in a "Pandemic Bill of Rights," which has gathered more than 10,000 signatures.
Wednesday's march comes a day after nurses told state lawmakers about the struggles they're facing during the COVID-19 pandemic.
"This idea goes against everything we know as a nurse," Brittany Livaccari, a nurse at United Hospital, said in Tuesday's hearing. "Just three months ago if I were to utilize respirators in a manner in which I am being told to now, I would no longer be allowed to work at united hospital. And it's very likely I would lose my license and would never be able to practice as a nurse again."
The state says inventories show hospitals have plenty of N95 masks and other supplies to last three weeks, and when they run low, they can get more from the state's stockpile or from their own supply chains.
Alice Roberts-Davis, the commissioner of the Minnesota Department of Administration, told 5 EYEWITNESS NEWS the state has a 24-day supply of gowns, a 71-day supply of gloves and a 209-day supply of masks.
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