Hospitals Evacuated in Preparation for Hurricane Irene with Aid of Pulse Oximeter
ROCKVILLE, Md., Aug. 30, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Hurricane Irene came rushing up the East Coast as a Category One. As the storm left the Caribbean and approached the United States, many states in the Northeast began to worry. The coastline north of Virginia and even Maryland, is not prone to hurricanes. Coastal towns from New Jersey all the way up to Massachusetts began mandatory evacuations of certain low lying areas. New York City was one that took steps that had not been seen in the city ever before. Mayor Bloomberg evacuated thousands of people in Staten Island, Brooklyn, Queens, Manhattan, and even Long Island. The public transportation system was also shut down with fears of flooding. Holland Tunnel, connecting New York City and New Jersey, did experience some flooding Sunday. Hospitals that were in Zone A in New York City were forced to evacuate most patients. Only patients whose health was in greater risk from moving were kept in place. In order to move patients, doctors had to get certain tools and procedures in place. One tool used was the pulse oximeter.
A pulse oximeter, also known as a pulse ox, is a medical device used to measure blood oxygen saturation and pulse rate of a patient. Many patients at hospitals in New York City were on supplemental oxygen, which made it critical for doctors to continuously monitor their oxygen levels throughout their transport. A new finger pulse oximeter made this both easy and possible. It runs on standard AAA batteries and is designed to clip onto one's fingertip. It provides a reading within seconds of application. A finger pulse oximeter is widely used by individuals at home who are suffering from respiratory illnesses.
Hurricane Irene left behind almost $10 billion in damage and over 20 people dead, but the pr