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The shortage of personal protective equipment (PPE) across the country, and the world, amid the COVID-19 pandemic prompted individuals, organizations, and colleges to donate medical supplies and protective gear to local hospitals for their health care staff.

Montgomery College staff preparing medical donations
Monique Davis preparing donations of PPE

For Melissa Sprague, Montgomery College alumna and interim chair of health sciences, the need hit close to home. Sprague, a registered nurse with nearly 35 years of experience, also has two daughters who are nurses. They are working on the front lines in the fight against the pandemic.

“What motivated me was making sure the equipment got there. When I first saw my daughters wearing homemade masks, I kind of lost it. We need to get this equipment out to everyone,” Sprague said.

The College donated the following items:
• N95 Masks–26 (Donated by Follett Bookstore)
• Surgical Masks–750 each
• Model/Cone Masks–250 each
• Face Masks with Shield–130 each
• Yellow Isolation Gowns–300 each
• Blue Plastic Isolation Gowns–24 each
• Surgical Gowns–310 each
• Hand Sanitizer (Purell 8 oz. bottles)–6 bottles
• Hand Sanitizer (Purell 68 oz. bottles)–4 bottles
• Gloves (small, medium, large, XL) 100 to 200 count–107 boxes
• Sterile Gloves (assorted sizes)–500 pair
• Sanicloth Disinfecting Wipes (60 wipes/container)–13 containers
• Sanicloth Disinfecting Wipes (95 wipes/container)–1 container
• Shoe Covers–140 pair
• Bouffant Caps–500 each
• Surgical Boot Covers–50 each

To address this shortage and respond to a need from its Montgomery County Government partners, Montgomery College donated more than 3,100 pieces of PPE to the Office of Emergency Management and Homeland Security earlier this month. The College’s Coronavirus Advisory Team (CAT), which Sprague is a member of, facilitated the donation.

We are extremely fortunate to have additional supplies to donate to health care teams across Montgomery County

The items were donated from MC’s Health Science programs, which include diagnostic medical sonography, nursing, physical therapy assistant, radiologic technology, and surgical technology. The CAT gathered, packaged, and delivered the equipment and supplies, including N95 protective face masks, early April.

“We are extremely fortunate to have additional supplies to donate to health care teams across Montgomery County,” said Dr. Monique Davis, collegewide instructional dean of health sciences and director of nursing. “These donations are just one example of the College’s ongoing commitment and dedication to the health and well-being of our Montgomery County community.”

“In addition to what we gathered from the individual Health Science programs, we donated all of the personal protective equipment purchased for our annual mass casualty drill,” said Sprague.

Montgomery College staff preparing PPE donations
Melissa Sprague (left) and Netta Rogers of the Montgomery County Office of Emergency Management and Homeland Security (right)

The drill, originally scheduled for April 25, is an annual event in which students and faculty from each of MC’s Health Science programs volunteer in a mass casualty simulation on the Takoma Park/Silver Spring Campus.

Joining Dr. Davis and Melissa Sprague on the CAT team are Dr. Rebecca Thomas, chair, Rockville Campus Biology Department; Adam Reid, Clery compliance manager; and Carlo Sanchez, interim assistant director of public safety, Takoma Park/Silver Spring Campus.

“We would like to thank the College’s Board of Trustees and Dr. Pollard for their swift action expedite donating these much-needed items,” Davis said.

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