Celia Yap-Banago Kansas City, Missouri nurse dies of coronavirus after raising concern of lack of PPE. Her death comes a week before her planned retirement.
A Missouri nurse has died from coronavirus after sounding off concern about the lack of personal protective equipment (PPE) staffers were given while caring for patients. The healthcare worker’s death comes a week before her planned retirement according to a report.
Yap-Banago who had worked 40 years in the nursing field had raised concerns about the hospital not doing enough to protect workers, according to nursing union association National Nurses United.
‘She was one of many RNs at the hospital who have expressed concern over inadequate COVID-19 preparation at RMC,’ the group said in a statement.
‘Those concerns include insufficient supplies of the optimal personal protective equipment for RNs and other health care workers, delays in notifying nurses of being exposed to a suspected infected patients and staff and expected to continue reporting to work when exposed.’
Too little too late?
The hospital confirmed that Yap-Banago died Tuesday, just a week before she was set to retire from her a decades-long career.
‘We are heartbroken by the passing of our colleague, Celia Yap-Banago, a nearly-40-year nursing veteran at Research Medical Center,’ said CEO Ashley McClellan.
‘It is difficult to put into words what Celia means to our hospital and to the countless number of patients she cared for.’
Video of Celia’s vigil cited a coworker saying Banago loved being a mom and ‘she loved being a union nurse — that was really important to her.’
‘Part of that was expressing concern her for the safety here at the hospital,’ the coworker said. ‘We had been fighting for appropriate personal protective equipment since January.’
The union accused HCA, which owns the hospital where Banago worked, of failing to provide proper PPE, KCTV reports. A union representative said that while PPE availability has improved, it’s still not enough.
Unclear is to what degree protective measures at the hospital where Celia worked have been undertaken as healthcare workers continue working in the frontlines at great peril.
As of Monday night, Missouri had seen 7,171 coronavirus cases and 288 deaths from the virus, according to state data.