TMA/County Society/Construction Industry Personal Protective Equipment Collection + Distribution Initiative

TMA/County Society/Construction Industry Personal Protective Equipment Collection + Distribution Initiative

TMA county medical societies, alliances chapters along with local businesses are teaming together to collect personal protective equipment (PPE) for the medical communities. More than 12 PPE drives are underway. 

Below are steps CMSs and Alliance chapters can take to start a PPE drive in their area. 

Goal: Locate and distribute N95 medical masks (respirators) and other medical supplies to health care workers on the frontline

Strategy: Local county medical societies partner with state and specialty societies and local construction industry organizations and other interested businesses to donate and receive donations of personal protective equipment for use on the frontline.

Or, counties can just launch a Facebook campaign asking their community for help.

How the program works: 

Get Organized

  • Determine if you have the capacity to hold/organize a PPE drive. You will need to find a location(s) for drop offs, people to sort PPE items, the ability to communicate what items you have for the medical community, what hours people can donate and pick up items, and volunteers needed.
  • Identify stakeholders in the community who may have a stockpile of needed supplies. You may already have contacts in the construction industry. However, TMA will provide a list of construction industry association executive directors by city/region so the county medical society can contact them as a starting point. We also have the Texas Auto Dealers Association standing by to drop off needed supplies once your location is identified.
  • Establish a point of contact at each participating organization. 

Stakeholder Communications

  • Develop an announcement, flyer or email outlining needs (see draft flyer from San Antonio pilot, attached). Suggested items to include in communication: (1) explain the need; (2) ask for their help; (3) medical supplies needed; (4) drop-off location(s); (5) drop-off times at location; (6) contact person if they have questions; and (7) final deadline to accept supplies. (TMA can help smaller societies develop this. See flyer below)
  • Distribute the flyer to each organizations’ stakeholders via email. Ask stakeholders to distribute the flyers to their members.
  • Send a message to your physician members letting them know you are doing a PPE drive and ask them if they need PPE. Ask them to send you and email with their needs so you can get the supplies to them if you receive them. 

Organize Drop-off Site + Volunteers

  • Determine drop-off site. Most are using their CMS office as the drop-off site.
  • Solicit volunteers to help with donation arrivals, organizing the donations, and helping with distribution of supplies. Remember: Your local Alliance is standing by to help
  • Determine how and when physicians and office staff can pick up donated supplies, and communicate that information to your members. You may have to ask for ID before giving out supplies just to make sure they are legitimate. 

Tracking Inventory + Distribution

  • Track who is donating supplies, what supplies are being donated and how much of each. This will help you communicate what you have in stock and to thank everyone later.
  • Determine how and when physicians and office staff can pick up donated supplies, and communicate that information to your members. You may have to ask for ID before giving out supplies just to make sure they are legitimate.
  • Contact the Texas College of Emergency Physicians who will notify their physicians who can come and pick up donations. Contact Beth Brooks, TCEP at tcep@texacep.org or call (512) 633-9943.
  • Avoid liability issues by accepting only supplies in sterile packaging and unopened boxes. Do not accept mask and other supplies that not in their original packaging. Do not accept homemade masks. Use the "Release and Indemnification for Donate Medical Supplies" document attached here. 

Get the Word + Thanking Community

  • Once the collection dates are set for the donation, identify someone to photograph the donations, gather quotes, and post on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter thanking partners for their generous and timely gifts. This is an amazing effort and partnership between local businesses and the medical community -- one that needs to be documented and shared.

Possible Source for Face Masks
NIOSH-Approved Particulate Filtering Facepiece Respirators 
Texas Construction Association 
Texas Association of Builders 
Associated General Contractors of Texas 
American Subcontractors Association of Texas 
Virtual Builders Exchange 
Construction Financial Management Association
Associated Builders and Contractors
Black Contractors Association
Hispanic Contractors Association of Texas
Independent Electrical Contractors National Electrical Contractors Association
Plumbing Heating Cooling Contractors
Texas Air Conditioning Contractors Association
Texas Automobile Dealers Association 

PPE Guidelines
Surgical Masks versus N95 Respirator Face Masks: The 'N95' designation means that when subjected to careful testing, the respirator blocks at least 95 percent of very small (0.3 micron) test particles. If properly fitted, the filtration capabilities of N95 respirators exceed those of face masks. Use only masks that are in sealed packaging. Do not accept masks that have been exposed to air.

Medical Gloves: Use medical gloves from sealed boxes. Do not take medical gloves from boxes that have been exposed to air.

Homemade Masks: Not recommended at this time - From CDC site
HCP use of non-NIOSH approved masks or homemade masks

In settings where N95 respirators are so limited that routinely practiced standards of care for wearing N95 respirators and equivalent or higher level of protection respirators are no longer possible, and surgical masks are not available, as a last resort, it may be necessary for HCP to use masks that have never been evaluated or approved by NIOSH or homemade masks. It may be considered to use these masks for care of patients with COVID-19, tuberculosis, measles, and varicella. However, caution should be exercised when considering this option.1,2

References
Discusses use of expired N95 masks and which ones the CDC have tested and approved: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/release-stockpiled-N95.html

Statement on use of industrial masks in medical settings: https://www.inddist.com/supply-chain/news/21119754/fda-oks-industrial-respirators-for-health-care-amid-coronavirus

FDA Guidelines: https://www.fda.gov/medical-devices/personal-protective-equipment-infection-control/questions-about-personal-protective-equipment-ppe

CDC's PPE FAQ: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/hcp/respirator-use-faq.html

Fair Allocation of Scarce Medical Resources in the Time of Covid-19
https://www.nejm.org/doi/full/10.1056/NEJMsb2005114?query=featured_home   

The use of expired N95 masks and which ones the CDC have tested and approved.
https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/release-stockpiled-N95.html  

Liability Immunity for Qualified Coronavirus Countermeasures — How the PREP Act and HHS Declaration Apply | Blogs | Coronavirus Resource Center | Foley & Lardner LLP
https://www.foley.com/en/insights/publications/2020/03/liability-immunity-coronavirus-countermeasures                       

Please let TMA know what you are doing so we can share it with your colleagues and thank the appropriate donors.

FOR MORE INFORMATION AND QUESTIONS: CALL PAM UDALL (512) 413-6807.

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Last Updated On

March 30, 2020

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