Alberta Health Services is not protecting its workers from Ebola with gowns that are before the courts in the United States for allegedly failing industry tests.
American media have reported a $500-million lawsuit was filed this week against multi-national Kimberly-Clark Corp. alleging the company falsely claimed its surgical gowns protected against Ebola and other infectious diseases.
At the heart of the lawsuit is the MICROCOOL breathable high performance surgical gown.
The lawsuit alleges that the company knew for at least a year that the gown had failed tests for impermeability to blood and microbes, but continued to claim the gown provided the highest level of protection against diseases including Ebola.
The lawsuit was filed by a Los Angeles surgeon.
Kathy Kiel, Alberta Health spokesperson said in an e-mail that Alberta Health Services does not use the “Kimberly-Clark MICROCOOL gowns nor has AHS ordered any for future use.”
The gown that Alberta is using for Ebola preparedness is the Cardinal Health impermeable operating room SmartGown, the same gown routinely used as part of day surgeries in Edmonton and Calgary.
On Tuesday, Alberta Health showcased the personal protective gear — gowns, gloves, face masks and guards — health workers in Alberta are using against the transmission of Ebola.
Ebola personal protective gear has been sent to the four acute care facilities in Edmonton and Calgary designated to care for suspected or confirmed cases, as well as regional and urban hospital emergency departments, urgent care centres and several additional facilities.