I am a new infection prevention nurse and I am being asked to give an account of how much personal protective equipment we are using daily. How should I calculate this?

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services has some great resources to assist you with this exact calculation. Try this: www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/hcp/ppe-strategy/burn-calculator.html.

This page will explain how to calculate your ”burn rate” — how much PPE is being used, or consumed, daily by your facility.

There is an excel spreadsheet example for your use, plus an app for android and IOS phones. CMS recommends downloading and saving the PPE Burn Rate Calculator spreadsheet to your computer before opening the spreadsheet. Taking this step will open the spreadsheet in Excel rather than your web browser.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, facilities can use the NIOSH PPE Tracker app to calculate their average PPE burn rate. The app estimates how many days a PPE supply will last given current inventory levels and PPE burn rate. The app is available for both android and IOS devices. Visit the NIOSH PPE Tracker app page to download this free tool.

The CDC informs us: “To use the calculator, enter the number of full boxes of each type of PPE in stock (gowns, gloves, surgical masks, respirators and face shields, for example) and the total number of patients at your facility. The tool will calculate the average consumption rate … for each type of PPE entered in the spreadsheet. This information can then be used to estimate how long the remaining supply of PPE will last, based on the average consumption rate. Using the calculator can help facilities make order projections for future needs.”