With the increasing risk to healthcare professionals as the case numbers of COVID-19 grows in Australia, we asked local QLD Cardiologist, Dr Elisabeth Donnelly, why she chooses to use SAM Safety Shield alongside other forms of PPE for her procedures.

As an imaging specialist cardiologist when we perform Transoesophageal Echocardiography we have close contact with our patients and are often directly exposed to their secretions. This has become a significant issue with the COVID-19 era and recent surge in cases in the community and hospitals.  We have been using increased levels of PPE when we know a person is COVID positive. However we are now faced with the situation of often not knowing who is and who isn’t COVID positive, and have had to change our practices in line with this.

We have been using the SAM Safety Shield since it was invented in 2020 by an Australian anaesthetist, to assist in reducing the saliva and aerosol projected onto myself and my team while a patient breathes during a TOE procedure. It is well designed, a step up from the old mouthguard piece, straightforward to use, and I have now placed it on my preference card. I believe it enhances my ability to protect my team and myself from COVID-19 and other air borne diseases and would recommend it be incorporated into standard PPE for every procedure where healthcare professionals may be at risk of exposure to patients’ aerosolised secretions.

Dr Elisabeth Donnelly, Cardiologist