STRHS Parking Lot

Southern Tennessee Regional Health System-Winchester/Sewanee is reaching out to the public to get medical and protective supplies and equipment donated.

The hospital announced Tuesday it has begun an effort to get necessary supplies that might be greatly needed if the coronavirus pandemic escalates at the local level.

“In response to questions about how members of the community can assist in the region’s novel coronavirus response, Southern Tennessee Regional Health System-Winchester/Sewanee … is accepting donations of unused and handmade medical and protective supplies and equipment,” the hospital said in a press release. “This move is part of STRHS’s ongoing efforts to address the COVID-19 pandemic and prepare for increased needs of personal protective equipment, which healthcare providers across the nation are experiencing.”

The hospital can accept the following unused medical and protective supplies and equipment:

• Disposable face masks, including surgical masks and earloop masks

• Respirator masks, rated at N95 or higher

• Face shields and goggles designed to protect eyes

• Disposable gowns such as medical/dental gowns as well as impervious or isolation gowns

• Disposable non-latex gloves

• Disposable surgical caps

• Disposable foot covers

• Antimicrobial wipes

• Hand sanitizer

The press release says STRHS cannot accept medical devices, medications or linens.

Those with supplies and equipment to donate may contact STRHS’ Incident Command Center at 931-967-8208 to arrange delivery.

STRHS’ move coincides with other doctors and nurses nationally who are now crying out for masks and other personal protective equipment.

In other parts of the nation, medical personnel have been forced to wear bandanas and scarves for masks, trash bags for gowns, and reuse all sorts of medical equipment, heightening the risk of coronavirus infection and possibly death when the nation is relying on healthcare workers more than ever to curb the outbreak.

Different levels of government are now trying to take action with cities, counties, states, and the federal government racing to get more personal protective equipment and send it to places and hospitals that have been hardest hit by Covid-19.

President Donald Trump recently activated the Defense Production Act, a once-obscure law that could let the feds dictate what equipment is produced and where it goes.

The federal government has started to send out some masks and other equipment from the Strategic National Stockpile, although state and local officials argue the response has still been too slow.