Masks – Required, Supplies and Q&A

Masks, masks, masks

Update: May 22, 2020

PPE Ordering process for non-VCH affiliated Community Specialists

For owned and operated/contracted clinics in the community, there is a centralized process in place for orders to be submitted and processed.  The process is listed below.

For the specialists, all VCH operated specialist clinics, as well as private specialist clinics on a VCH campus with physicians that have VCH privileges are being supported:

    • For the VCH operated specialist clinics, the processed for securing PPE are being arranged through the ambulatory site manager in most cases. That would be the place for the physicians to reach out if they have requests.
    • For the private specialist clinics, see the updated process and order form to access 3-5 days of PPE supplies.

Group homes – Housing BC is supporting PPE needs for this environment.  We do support if an outbreak is identified.

Mask Request Centralized Process:

  1.  Physician completes PPE supply order form to request supplies
  2.  Completed form is submitted to the central COVID supply inbox: VCHCOVID-19CentralSupply@vch.ca
  3.  The central supply management team will confirm the order is from a community specialist and will follow up with payment
  4.  A 3-5 day quantity of PPE supplies will be provided. Physicians must use PPE in accordance with the provincial guidelines outlining prolonged PPE use.

Masks – Visit the Frequently Asked Questions Resource Page


With the increase in COVID-19 activity across the world, the global demand for personal protective equipment (PPE) has increased, particularly for N95 respirators, surgical and procedure masks and Microsan.

Thousands of local dentists and businesses in the community have responded to our rallying cry for more masks.

We’re also hoping that staff will also do their part and return extra supplies currently stored in various units to their original location – no questions asked.

For more information on supplies, please see the COVID-19 supplies checklist, or email brittany.watson2@vch.ca​. 


Masks required for Emergency Department employees and medical staff

Because Emergency Department (ED) staff are more likely to come into contact with potential or actual COVID-19 positive patients, we are now asking all ED employees and medical staff to wear a surgical mask for the duration of their shifts.

As of March 19, ED employees and medical staff are instructed to wear a surgical mask throughout their shifts and only replace the surgical mask when:

•    It becomes soiled/dirty
•    When breathing becomes difficult through it
•    At break/end of shift
•    After encounters with patients who present with COVID-19 symptoms

Minimizing staff exposure will protect the safety of all of our staff as well as minimize the risk to patients, family and the public.