Update 2 for DePaul Responds: Protective Equipment for Healthcare Workers

Update 2 for DePaul Responds: Protective Equipment for Healthcare Workers

Original here.

Thanks to you, much progress has been made over the past several days and as expected, more work must be done. Led by DePaul, an ever-growing network, including Chicago Public Schools, Chicago Public Libraries, the Museum of Science and Industry, and Northwestern University, has increased production to about 6,500 shields/day, served 44 hospitals, raised over $10,000, and have hundreds of makers contributing to our efforts.

But now is not the time to sit down. Here is a message from Ashley Cohen, BSN, RN, who is leading a group of medical students delivering PPE to hospitals all around the City of Chicago: 

“PPE is the armor that protects our healthcare workers in the war on COVID-19. Due to the shortage that is crippling hospitals here in Chicago, our friends, our coworkers, our clinical professors are already getting sick. They were sent into battle without adequate protection. Hospitals are characteristically sticklers for safety…but are now accepting, even soliciting donations of cloth masks made by private citizens at home. This is because cloth masks are better than nothing at all. Refrigerated morgue trucks are now in use all over New York City to store the bodies of COVID-19 victims because there is no space left in hospital morgues and funeral homes. CDC models predict that the surge currently afflicting NYC will likely hit its peak here in Chicago in the coming weeks. We need all the armor we can get if we are to stand a chance in the coming battle. We welcome any and all help we can get in coming to the aid of Chicago’s healthcare workers.”

If we keep them healthy, they keep us healthy. Donors to this campaign have helped create and deliver 4,000 masks all around the city and state. Every additional $25 that you donate helps us fabricate and deliver 10 additional masks. In addition to your generosity, we are working hard to write grants and secure alternate sources of funding.

We will continue fundraising and creating PPE until there is no longer a need.

As a faculty and community member of DePaul University, I deeply believe in our Vincentian values of service to the community and others. I have been greatly touched by the outreach, kind words, and efforts of our students, faculty, staff and friends all around Chicago and all of Illinois this past week. Times like these show that these values of selflessness and service are values that we all commonly share. They are what’s required to help solve big problems.

This is who we are. This is what must be done.

Thank you again for your generosity. Please continue to share information about this campaign with your networks, and we will continue to keep you informed as to how your gift is helping health care workers across the state.