Mercy Health Love County - Content

Decontamination Showers

The hospital has a decontamination shower for patients arriving at the emergency room after an incident that has contaminated them with either chemical or biological hazardous material, such as methamphetamine.

The shower, a pre-fabricated unit, approximately 4 ft. x 8 ft., is outside the building, with a connecting entry to the emergency room. The outdoor location is intended to keep affected persons beyond hospital walls until they have received initial decontamination.

The unit consists of a quick-connect structure with multiple shower heads, privacy walls, an elevated floor, and a containment pool to captured waste water. It uses a warm water supply for patient comfort even in summer months.

This decontamination capability is expected to have immediate domestic benefit in detoxifying the bodies and clothing of persons, particularly children, removed from area methamphetamine labs by law enforcement.

It will also be a vital tool in handling commercial and agricultural accidents, such as petrochemical and insecticide exposures.

A second, portable unit can be deployed anywhere in the county to provide immediate patient decontamination at the incident scene.

Medical workers don hazardous material suits when decontaminating patients. They also are equipped with a radiation detector.