Michigan has received 100,000 masks, more to come, Whitmer says

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In this illustration dated February 26, 2020, protective N-95 face masks lie on a table at an office in Washington, DC. – A senior US health official warned that, despite containment efforts, it was only a matter of time before the COVID-19 disease spreads in the United States. As of February 26, 2020, there were 59 cases of the infection in the United States. This included 45 people who were repatriated from a cruise ship off the coast of Japan or from Wuhan, the Chinese city at the heart of the epidemic. Critics, including lawmakers on both sides of the aisle, have accused the Trump administration of downplaying the crisis and underfunding the response. (Photo by EVA HAMBACH / AFP) (Photo by EVA HAMBACH/AFP via Getty Images)

Lansing, Mich. (WLNS) — Governor Gretchen Whitmer announced on social media Saturday morning that Michigan has received 112,800 N96 masks in a shipment.

She said that 8,000 more masks are on their way to the state. In a tweet, Whitmer wrote: “Great news for our health care workers. We’ll keep working hard along with FEMA and the White House to get more of the PPE we need to keep Michiganders safe.”

The U.S. is currently facing a nationwide shortage of masks and medical gear to combat the novel coronavirus. Some medical professionals are reusing masks and gloves because they do not have enough equipment. Others are taking to social media using hashtags including PPE (personal protective equipment) to raise awareness about the need for it.

In Michigan, COVID-19 has hit the city of Detroit the hardest. On March 27, 1,075 cases were reported in Detroit with 23 deaths, which accounts for roughly one-third of all cases in Michigan.

On Thursday, Beaumont Hospital in Detroit said the hospital would be closing the emergency room to treat only COVID-19 patients, according to WXYZ Detroit. The hospital said it is approaching capacity with the rising number of COVID-19 cases. More than 450 patients with the virus had been receiving care throughout its eight locations in Oakland and Wayne Counties as of Thursday, CBS Detroit reported.

To donate supplies to Beaumont Health, visit their donations website here.

Donation bins will be located outside the Beaumont Service Center main entrance through Saturday, March 28. Community members will be able to drive up and place needed supplies and materials in the bins from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.

MOST-NEEDED PERSONAL PROTECTIVE EQUIPMENT

  • new or unused disposable face masks
  • N-95 masks (sometimes called respirators)
  • eye protection including face shields and safety goggles
  • disposable gowns
  • disposable gloves (especially non-latex)
  • disposable surgical caps
  • disposable foot covers
  • wipes: bleach or anti-microbial
  • hand-sanitizer
  • Specialized items, such as:
    • PAPRs (powered air purifying respirators) and PAPR hoods
    • nasal testing swabs
    • viral testing kits

Items Beaumont will not accept at this time:

  • home-sewn reusable masks or 3-D printed ventilator parts
  • medications, food, blankets, medical equipment, or other supplies 

Note: These kinds of items might be needed later. If Beaumont’s donation needs change, the list will be updated.

FINANCIAL DONATIONS

To make a financial donation to Beaumont’s COVID-19 Fund to assist patients and emergency operations, visit www.beaumont.org/giving or mail a check to the Beaumont Health Foundation (Please write COVID-19 Fund on your check).

Beaumont Health Foundation
26901 Beaumont Blvd., 5D
Southfield, MI  48033

McLaren Flint posted Saturday morning on social media that they have received a number of safety goggles, N95 masks and sanitizing wipes from several public schools in the area.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration refers to N95 masks as those that are used to protect the mask-wearer from airborne particles and from liquid contaminating the face.

To understand the difference between an N95 respirator and a surgical mask, one must know the following:

According to the FDA, it is best to prevent airborne transmission using a combination of interventions, not just personal protective equipment alone.

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