PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) —As the number of COVID-19 cases continues to climb across the Pacific Northwest, healthcare workers are finding themselves in increasingly dire need of personal protective equipment (PPE).
Without these items—such as surgical masks, gloves and face shields—doctors, nurses and first responders on the front lines could face tough decisions in treating patients.
Items needed by various healthcare groups:
- Latex free gloves
- Commercially made procedural masks and surgical masks
- N95 respirators and N95 filters
- Other respirators (P100’s, PAPR’s, and PAPR supplies/parts)
- Face shields
- Splash shields
- Hand sanitizer
- Disinfecting wipes
The Veterans Affairs Medical Center is asking the public for PPE donations. Staff members are asking for unopened boxes of supplies including surgical and N95 masks, eye protection like goggles, helmets with face shields and store-bought hand sanitizer. They’re also asking for new, unopened iPads, Android tablets or Kindle Fire tablets that can help them care for their patients online.
Companies like PGE, Stimson Lumber and New Seasons have donated items, as well as the Beaverton School District—but there is still a need for more.
“Getting PPE to healthcare facilities—healthcare providers—is probably the most important thing you can do in order to continue to provide care,” said Dr. Lakshmi Mudambi, the director of Interventional Pulmonology. “As we expect a surge coming in, that’s going to become more important—getting enough PPE so they can be protected while they provide care.”
By Wednesday, the VA Medical Center had carried out 103 COVID-19 tests, three of which were positive. The first coronavirus-related death in Oregon was at the Portland campus.
The facility has since set up an emergency department triage tent just in case they see an increase in the number of patients.
“We are just trying to be as prepared as we can for our veterans to make sure we can take good care of them and we don’t spread what’s going on,” said nurse Molly Archer.
Visitors are still not permitted inside the center. Those who would like to donate PPE supplies should arrange a drop-off time by calling the Voluntary Service Office at 503.203.5042 in Portland or 360.690.1842 in Vancouver.
Other ways to donate:
The Clark Regional Emergency Services Agency (CRESA) and Clark County Public Health are also asking for desperately-needed PPE donations. The following items should be new and unopened:
A supply warehouse is open from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday-Friday to help streamline the donation process. If you’d like to donate supplies, please email email@example.com to schedule donations and deliveries and include your contact information, the items and the quantity of your donation.
Multnomah County Health and Portland Fire & Rescue are urgently asking for PPE items. They say that without this gear, hospitals and clinics may need to shut down and first responders will be limited in their abilities to help.
You can drop the items off at these locations and hours:
Portland Fire & Rescue
Fire Marshal Office Parking Lot
1300 SE Gideon St.
Portland, OR 97202
12–4pm, Monday–Friday; 10am–2pm Saturday & Sunday
Multnomah County Headquarters
(Loading dock on 6th St.)
501 SE Hawthorne
Portland, OR 97214
If you have questions or a large quantity of equipment that you would like to donate and need it to be picked up, email:
Clackamas County Public Health is accepting PPE donations. Please email EOCLogistics@clackamas.us or call 503.650.3312.
State of Oregon
New PPE are being collected in Salem. They will be added to the state’s cache for COVID-19 preparedness. This applies to medical professionals (doctor, dentist, veterinarian, etc), or non-health care private sector businesses, for example, contractors or electricians.
You can mail in or drop off the PPE. The address is:
ATTN: PPE Coordinator
Dept. of Corrections
3601 State Street
Salem, OR, 97301
Click here to make a donation, offer services or volunteer (or find additional resources) to help the state of Oregon respond to the coronavirus pandemic.
Resources for manufacturers
There’s also an effort to connect manufacturers and suppliers with those in need of equipment. Click here to visit the national website for donations, healthcare providers and makers. For local manufacturers, small businesses, local suppliers and clinicians: click here to connect with those in need via Slack.
Sewing face masks:
Salem Health on Wednesday temporarily stopped coronavirus testing in three of its clinics and hospital emergency rooms because of a supply shortage.
Salem Health needs the community’s help to sew nearly 10,000 masks for nurses and other healthcare providers. Those interested in helping must have a sewing machine, white thread, scissors or a rotary cutter and a yardstick, straight edge or cutting mat. The mask-making kits include special fabric and instructions.
- Mask kits will be available for pick up at the locations below. People should stay in their car; staff members will give the kits to those who stop by.
- Each household may take up to two kits; each kit has material for 30 to 50 masks.
- Continue social distancing. Please do not host mask-making parties with friends/neighbors or ask to pick up kits to take to someone else.
- Return completed masks to a drop-off location with a few days.
Pick up mask kits
- Thursday, March 26 from 1 to 3 p.m.
- Friday, March 27 from 9 to 11 a.m.
- Salem — Town Park security booth (former Kmart parking lot at Mission St. SE and 25th St. SE)
- Dallas — West Valley Hospital parking lot (525 SE Washington St., look for the tent)
Drop off completed masks (same locations)
- Monday, March 30, 9 to 11 a.m.
- Wednesday, April 1, 1 to 3 p.m.
- Thursday, April 2, 10 a.m. to noon
- Friday, April 3, 9 to 11 a.m.
- Thursday, April 2, 1 to 3 p.m.
- Friday, April 3, 9 to 11 a.m.