Santa Clara County Health Officer Dr. Sara Cody issued a countywide order Wednesday requiring entities and people to report their inventories of personal protective equipment by April 15.
The one-time report is intended to help county public health officials assess how much equipment is readily available in the event of a surge in hospitalizations due to the novel coronavirus.
Public health officials believe the county and regional shelter-in-place orders have bought some time for Santa Clara County's health care system to prepare for a surge, which is more a matter of "when," not "if."
"Our goal is to ensure the capacity of our health care system by expanding the number of available hospital beds and by ensuring that the workforce that is providing care for patients has sufficient personal protective equipment," said Dr. Jennifer Tong, the Santa Clara County Emergency Operations Center's hospital surge capacity branch chief.
Tong said the county has also requested state and federal assistance in procuring protective equipment, but knowing the local available supply is also important.
Reporting residents and businesses will not be required to donate their supplies of personal protective equipment, but county officials encourage them to do so via the Valley Medical Center Foundation.
The full order from the county, along with the online survey and list of items required for disclosure, can be found at sccphd.org/cv19PPE. Surveys are available in English, Spanish, Vietnamese, Tagalog and Chinese. Reports must be filed by 11:59 p.m. on April 15.