A pointy-eyed employee at a Massachusetts hospital is being credited with recognizing a cargo of tens of hundreds of counterfeit N95 surgical masks that might have probably put the well being of frontline medical employees in danger, officers stated Monday.
Masks and different protecting gear have been in excessive demand through the coronavirus pandemic, resulting in shortages of many merchandise.
James “Barry” O’Shaughnessy, the supervisor of procurement of South Shore Well being in Weymouth with 25 years of expertise, lately positioned an order for 30,000 masks — however once they arrived, he observed one thing was awry.
“The labels on the packing containers had been positioned in another way than different shipments,” O’Shaughnessy stated in an announcement. “And the plastic bag contained in the packing containers had an odd seal. My intestine advised me one thing was off.”
He requested a 3M consultant to assist examine the third-party masks that weren’t from a 3M-authorized distributor.
“I despatched 20-30 pictures of the product to 3M and the consultant confirmed my suspicion. The masks had been counterfeit,” he stated.
The Division of Homeland Safety seized the masks and is investigating.
“Barry’s deep expertise and eager consideration to element helped defend hundreds of South Shore Well being workers from carrying counterfeit masks that may put them in danger,” President and CEO Dr. Allen Smith stated. “We’re grateful for his watchful eyes and dedication to the security of our colleagues.”