BOSTON- A team at Brigham and Women's Hospital has developed a coronavirus testing booth, which is likely the first of its kind in Boston.
Resident Physician Dr. Sherry Yu was inspired by a design used in South Korea and brought the idea to a team at Brigham and Women's Hospital.
"The team worked 15-hour days to get this thing done so it's pretty inspiring," said Kevin Giordano, Senior Vice President of Clinical Services at Brigham and Women's Hospital.
Brigham and Women's is testing hundreds of people for coronavirus every day, which means hospital workers are going through a lot of personal protective equipment (PPE), like gowns, masks and gloves.
"Just like everyone, our PPE is constrained significantly," said Giordano. "That's why engaging in these types of efforts early on are critical."
The testing booth takes away the need for PPE, helping to conserve the crucial equipment for the doctors and nurses treating patients inside.
The booth is made of plastic polycarbonate. It has an open back so the clinician is able to step in wearing no personal protective equipment. They put their arms through the portholes into thick rubber gloves. The patient approaches and the clinician takes a sample.
This booth may even offer more protection than the traditional PPE.
"It does provide an absolute barrier between the provider and the patient," said Yu.
This is the first and only testing booth up and running right now.
"The hope is to have several more later this week and then up to 10 across our systems in the short term," said Yu.
During this difficult time, it's one more sign of how people are coming together to make a difference.
"There are tough days but some of the best ideas and most inspiring activities happen in the face of the crisis," said Giordano.
Brigham and Women's Hospital is now getting inquiries from other hospitals about how to develop the booth.
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