WXXI AM News

jill montag

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention / Debora Cartagena

 

As the number of COVID-19 cases grows in western New York and the Finger Lakes, the supply of protective gear for medical workers is dwindling.

In particular, N95 masks, which health care workers use to protect themselves against the virus in close clinical settings, are running low.

Doctors and administrators at local health care systems have been quick to temper concerns, saying there is not an immediate crisis, but they are worried about running out of important equipment before supplies can be replenished.

Denise Young / WXXI News

Irfan Rahman’s laboratory sits at the end of a long hallway on the third floor of the University of Rochester’s School of Medicine and Dentistry.

Inside, Rahman and a team of researchers take apart e-cigarettes. They analyze the liquids that the devices turn into inhalable vapors in an effort to figure out exactly what those vapors are made of.