Why are we doing this?
Healthcare workers – including doctors, nurses, technicians – are treating a tidal wave of patients with COVID-19. This unprecedented surge has put a strain on Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) that these workers use to protect themselves from exposure to infectious disease such as COVID-19. Many locations throughout the United States are facing critical shortages of PPE due to this demand, leaving their healthcare workers to risk infection as they care for COVID-19 patients. We want to help get them the equipment they need.
How is this different than other initiatives?
This initiative is the primary Kellogg School of Management-affiliated effort to source and build PPE for frontline healthcare workers. The project uniquely leverages the Kellogg student and alumni network to fund-raise for procurement of face shields and mobilize 3D printing capacity (hobbyist or manufacture grade) and injection molding that exists within the Kellogg network to produce face shields. While there are surely other initiatives and projects using similar methods – we are driven by a “Operation Dynamo” philosophy to use every available resource to produce PPE, leaving no capacity for production unused during this time of crisis. We are exploring opportunities to align with other Northwestern PPE efforts to maximize the number of masks we can produce for the frontlines.
Why are we focused on face shields?
Face shields are personal protective equipment devices that are used for protection of the facial area and associated mucous membranes (eyes, nose, mouth) from splashes, sprays, and spatter of body fluids. Face shields are generally not used alone, but in conjunction with other protective equipment and are therefore classified as adjunctive personal protective equipment. Face shields are being used in an essential way to extend the life of the dwindling N95 mask inventory, while protecting doctors, nurses, and healthcare team members from contamination. Face shields designs are relatively easy to produce and, in many instances, can be reused with the proper disinfectant measures.
Have a question, want to get involved, or have a cause you’d like to engage the Kellogg network to know about? Contact us and we’ll do your best to get back to you within 24 hours.