A new Wisconsin program will accept donations or make purchases of large quantities of personal protective equipment to help ensure first responders are equipped to handle the growing COVID-19 pandemic.

Gov. Tony Evers on Thursday, March 26 launched the initiative to begin collecting gowns, gloves, masks and other supplies commonly referred to as PPE.

“As we face a global shortage of PPE, and are competing with other states to acquire limited resources, I am calling on companies, schools and other organizations that may have unused protective equipment sitting in their facilities to make those materials available to those who need it most,” Evers said in a statement. “The state appreciates any donations, but we are also prepared to pay a fair market value for large quantities of this equipment that are offered.”

Details on the program are available at https://covid19supplies.wi.gov/Donations

The following items are needed:

  • Surgical Gowns (S, L, XL, and XXL)
  • Face/Surgical Masks (adult, pediatric)
  • Gloves (Nitrile, Vinyl, or Butyl)
  • N-95 Particulate Respirators
  • Isolation Gowns
  • Face Shields
  • Tyvek Coveralls
  • Thermometers
  • Foot Coverings

The State Emergency Operations Center will distribute the PPE to communities in need, according to a news release. Local first responders and other non-medical organizations are directed to communicate their PPE needs to county or tribal emergency management offices, which will then forward requests to the SEOC for fulfillment.

Medical facilities such as hospitals, nursing homes, assisted living facilities and clinics should continue requesting supplies from the Strategic National Stockpile, the news release states.

“We are amazed at the outpouring of offers from businesses and other organizations who have already told us they want to help fill the critical need for this equipment across the state,” Dr. Darrell L. Williams, Wisconsin Emergency Management administrator, said in a statement. “Our staff has already been working to review those offers of support, and our hope is this site will help to streamline that process going forward.”

COVID-19 in Wisconsin

As of March 26, there were 707 positive test results for the respiratory disease COVID-19 in Wisconsin and 11,585 negative tests, according to the state health department. The disease is associated with eight deaths in the state.

There have been three total confirmed cases in Pierce County and four in St. Croix County as of Thursday.

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