The Role of Protective Eyewear in Fighting COVID-19: A Conversation With Nurse Jessica

The Role of Protective Eyewear in Fighting COVID-19: A Conversation With Nurse Jessica

An important disclaimer: Eagle Eyes does not manufacture or sell the type of protective eyewear used by healthcare workers fighting the COVID-19 epidemic. The CDC recommends that healthcare workers use goggles, face shields or even air-purifying respirators that enclose the provider’s entire head when treating COVID-19 patients.

We present this article to draw on parallels between the way that healthcare workers like Nurse Jessica use eyewear as critical personal protective equipment and how eyewear can play an important role in protecting our eyes from things like eye injuries and damage from UV rays.

We’re in the middle of a battle against a pandemic. And people like Nurse Jessica, an RN and the newest member of our Eagle Eyes Heroes program, are on the frontlines of the fight against COVID-19.

There’s no doubt that you’ve heard of the critical role of personal protective equipment (PPE), and of the shortages that hospitals are facing across the country. So, we thought we’d talk with Nurse Jessica to dig into the role that eye protection plays in the fight against COVID-19.

Most COVID-19 infections are thought to come from airborne respiratory droplets that are generated when a person with COVID-19 sneezes, and then spread to the mouth, nose or lungs of someone else, causing the infection to spread. Still, there’s good reason for healthcare providers treating COVID-19 patients to use eye protection.

“Your eyes are a point of entry into your body,” explains Nurse Jessica. “That makes you susceptible to contracting bacterial infections and viral infections through your eyes.”

It’s impossible to provide healthcare for COVID-19 patients without getting up close and personal, and when that happens, it’s important for providers to be protected.

At least one respiratory expert from China believes he was infected through the lack of protective eyewear while treating COVID-19 patients early on during the outbreak in that country.

“We have different masks that range from covering only a portion of the face to covering the entirety of the face,” says Jessica. “Depending on the situation, different PPE is required.”

When it comes to preventing the spread of COVID-19 in the general public, Nurse Jessica reminds us to follow the CDC’s guidelines: “Remaining the suggested six feet apart, practicing social distancing and frequent hand hygiene are the best courses of action the general public can take.”

Still, the way that healthcare providers use protective eyewear to protect themselves from COVID-19 parallels the way we can all use eyewear to protect ourselves in everyday life. The Prevent Blindness association estimates that more than 700,000 Americans injure their eyes at work every year, and that 90% of workplace eye injuries can be avoided by using proper safety eyewear.

Apart from wearing safety glasses at appropriate times, glasses with UV-blocking capabilities (like many of Eagle Eyes’ lenses) can protect your eyes from damaging rays from the sun.

“Outside of the healthcare setting, everyday people can benefit from wearing UV protective eyewear,” says Jessica.

We’re proud to have Jessica join our Heroes program as an ambassador for the thousands of healthcare providers who are confronting COVID-19 across our country. We’re finding new ways to say “thank you” to all of them every day, and we invite you to join us.