Sussex Tech, other school districts donating medical supplies to combat virus

Sussex Tech staff members gathered extra medical supplies and protective equipment to donate to Nanticoke Memorial Hospital in Seaford and Beebe Healthcare in Lewes to help health care workers on the front lines of the coronavirus fight. From left, district office staff member Kim Speicher, Sussex Tech Superintendent Stephen Guthrie, school nurse Susan Lynch and district office staff member Renee Dobson (Submitted photo).

GEORGETOWN — School districts are stepping to the plate to help Delaware’s health care workers battle the coronavirus.

Sussex Technical School District announced Tuesday it has donated extra medical supplies and protective equipment to staff at Nanticoke Memorial Hospital in Seaford and Beebe Healthcare in Lewes.

“In this fight, everyone has to do their part. For Sussex Tech, that means supporting our front-line nurses and doctors here in our community,” said Sussex Tech Superintendent Stephen Guthrie. “We know these extra supplies will go to a life-saving cause. Sussex Tech has educated local medical professionals for the last six decades, and we stand behind them all the way.”

The items donated include 8,800 gloves, 35 surgical gowns, 30 personal protective gowns, five biohazard protective kits, seven boxes of alcohol wipes, 23 bottles of hand sanitizer, 10 boxes of masks, 11 boxes of thermometer covers, sanitizer wipes, and other supplies.

The donations were provided by the high school and adult education health professions programs and the high school nurses’ staff. Sussex Tech enrolls about 140 students in its high school health professions program and 160 in its adult education classes annually.

“Beebe is so grateful for the overwhelming response from our community to help us – like Sussex Tech did,” said Tom Protack, Beebe Medical Foundation president.

Other school districts with healthcare pathway programs are checking their supply inventories as well.

“We’re going to see if we do have anything that we could donate that would help,” said Indian River School District Superintendent Mark Steele. “Those things we certainly do not have to have, only in the class setting. If we could get some of those things out to help Beebe, or Peninsula Regional, or any hospital around that needs them we would be more than happy to donate whatever we could to help.”

Inventory in the Woodbridge School District stems from its Patient Care Technician Pathway program in partnership with Delaware Technical Community College.

“We are going to do the same thing, once we find out what we have. We are actually going through the inventory,” Woodbridge Superintendent Heath Chasanov said Tuesday. “Our community is serviced mainly by Nanticoke, so we would reach out to them.”

Seaford School District Superintendent Dr. Corey Miklus said he has been working with Nanticoke Memorial Hospital and the city of Seaford mayor, doing weekly press updates/releases around COVID-19.

“So, our conversation today was around, ‘Let us know what you need – what supplies,’” Dr. Miklus said. “They (Nanticoke) are going to figure out what they need, and they are going to get in contact with us. We have a health program here. But anything they say they have a need for, we’ll look at all areas to help them out.”

The best way anyone can help is to “stay home, follow the state restrictions and the CDC’s recommendations,” said Mr. Protack. “The other way you can help us directly, is by making a contribution to our special COVID-19 relief fund.”

Financial donations can be made online at beebemedicalfoundation.org.

Donations are being organized through Beebe’s Population Health Department, which can be reached at 302-645-3337.

Mr. Steele said his wife, Linda, is putting her sewing skills to use in a mask-making project.

“She was looking (Monday) where to get the elastic and some of things,” said Mr. Steele. “She can sew. She is pretty good at that. Her mother is as well.”

“I am working on some masks right now to donate,” Ms. Steele said Tuesday morning.

ChristianaCare donations

Also Tuesday, in partnership with Delaware business leaders including Richard Piendak, Dave Tiberi, ChristianaCare announced it will open a collection site this week for donations of medical supplies to help protect Delaware’s health care workers.

Collections are scheduled from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. today through Friday at 110 W. Market St. in Newport. Additional dates will be added as needed.

The following unused items are needed:

• All types of unused protective face masks, especially N95 masks.

• Protective suits and medical scrubs.

• Goggles, safety glasses and face shields.

• Cleaning and sterilizing solutions and wipes.

• Medical gloves.

• Digital and disposable thermometers.

• Hand sanitizers.

ChristianaCare is requesting donations of these items from businesses or community members who have supplies that they do not currently need. Community members are not being asked to purchase new items for donation. However, monetary donations can be made online to support the effort at https://christianacare.org/donors/.

To keep volunteers and donors safe, people bringing donations should pack the items in the car trunk and pull into the donation line. Car windows should be left up and donors are to remain their vehicle. A volunteer will unload the items.

All people at the site are advised to practice social distancing by keeping at least six feet apart. Anyone who is experiencing flu-like symptoms should not come to this donation site.

For more information, visit www.christianacare.org or visit ChristianaCare on Facebook and Twitter.


Helpful Coronavirus links

Delaware Division of Health Coronavirus Page
CDC: About the Coronavirus Disease 2019
CDC: What to do if You Are Sick
Johns Hopkins Coronavirus Resource Center
AP News Coronavirus Coverage
Reopening Delaware: Resources for Businesses
Delaware Phase 2 guidance

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