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WKSU, our public radio partners in Ohio and across the region and NPR are all continuing to work on stories on the latest developments with the coronavirus and COVID-19 so that we can keep you informed.

Hospitals, First Responders Ask For Donations of Personal Protective Equipment

a photo of personal protective equipment
SUMMIT COUNTY EMERGENCY MANAGEMENT AGENCY
The Summit County Emergency Management Agency is coordinating the collection of personal protective equipment for hospitals and first responders.

The Summit County Emergency Management Agency and its counterparts in all Ohio counties are asking for donations.

They need personal protective medical equipment to help hospitals and first responders treat cases of COVID-19.

Summit County Public Health COVID-19 Call Line 330-926-5795 Portage County Emergency Management Agency 330-297-3607

Summit County’s Emergency Management Senior Administrator Thomas Smoot says it is unclear when new supplies will be available.

“We’re not sure where our next order is going to come from,” he said. “There are worldwide shortages because of this outbreak and how it started. So [the supplies] started to get kind of scarce, so we’re down to maybe 60-70 days before the next order is going to be filled. It’s going to be allocations based now.”

Governor Mike DeWine recently directed medical offices, health clinics and other health providers to 

personal protective equipment masks
Credit / SUMMIT COUNTY EMERGENCY MANAGEMENT AGENCY
/
SUMMIT COUNTY EMERGENCY MANAGEMENT AGENCY
Officials say three types of masks are needed, some of which could be available from non-medical industries.

suspend all nonessential procedures. That made gloves, gowns, swabs, goggles and masks more available to those on the front lines of the pandemic.

Acceptable masks are used in other industries by construction, chemical and painting companies. Smoot says three types of masks are acceptable.

Portage County  EMA
Physicians, dentists, veterinarians, construction companies and other businesses in Portage County,  can donate these items only:

  • NIOSH-approved N95 and higher-grade masks
  • Blue nitrile or exam gloves (no latex)
  • Surgical masks
  • Face shields
  • Medical grade splash protection gowns
  • Isolation gowns or aprons
  • Sterile swabs
  • No-touch thermometers
  • Size C batteries

Smoot said health organizations across Ohio should reach out to their county’s emergency management agency to donate the protective equipment.
“This is throughout the state,” Smoot said. “EMAs have been designated to receive any additional extra personal protective equipment and coordinate that to their first responders and hospital.  I would reach out to your local  EMA and find out how you can assist or see what resources you can provide.”

To schedule a drop off call first to schedule:330-926-5795 in Summit County and 330-926-5795 in Portage County.

Cuyahoga County collection point
Cuyahoga Couunty has established a donation collection point at the Cuyahoga County Public Works Garage located at 2501 Harvard Ave. in Newburgh Heights. The county encourages veterinary clinics, dentists, elective surgery centers, and other non-essential medical providers to donate surplus Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) to support those responding to the pandemic. The collection point will be open from 9:30 a.m to 2:30 p.m. Monday through Friday.  

Unopened boxes of the following items will be accepted:

  • N95 masks
  • Surgical masks
  • Gowns
  • Eye protection
  • Face shields
  • Nitrile gloves
  • Disinfecting wipes
  • Hand sanitizer

Only unopened boxes of the above items will be accepted. For additional information or questions, please email: resl@cuyahogacounty.us.