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CU Boulder donates 130,000 pieces of PPE for health care workers, first responders

PPE is regularly used throughout CU Boulder’s campus for research and other purposes from chemical labs to University Libraries.

BOULDER, Colo. — The University of Colorado at Boulder (CU Boulder) has donated more than 130,000 pieces of personal protective equipment (PPE) which will be used by health care workers and first responders on the front lines of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Dozens of CU Boulder departments worked to inventory and donate the PPE which included gloves, N-95 masks, face shields, shoe covers and other more.

The university's donation went to the Boulder Office of Emergency Management (OEM), which will distribute the supplies to health care providers, long-term care facilities and first responders throughout the county.

“These donations far exceeded my expectations,” said Garry DeJong, director of campus emergency management. “Coupled with our researchers and engineers working on ways to keep people safe and finding ways to fight COVID-19, CU Boulder is making a sizable impact in this historic moment.”

The PPE is regularly used throughout CU Boulder’s campus for research and other purposes from chemical labs to University Libraries.

“We were hoping for five to 10 departments to donate a few items,” said DeJong. “Once the word got out about the donations drive, the CU partners just continually kept stepping up.”

“The COVID-19 pandemic has created tremendous pressure on our health care systems, long-term care facilities and first responders,” said Mike Chard, director of the Boulder OEM. “Being able to keep the supply of medical and PPE at an essential service level preserves health care and government services and protects staff.”

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To help prevent the spread, people should:

  • Wash their hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. Use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60 percent alcohol if soap and water are not available.
  • Avoid touching their eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Stay home when they are sick.
  • Cover their cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.

If you are feeling ill with symptoms similar to those associated with COVID-19 the Denver Department of Public Health and Environment (DDPHE) recommends the following:

  • Manage your symptoms at home the same way you manage other cold symptoms. To the extent possible, people with flu-like symptoms should remain at home.
  • If you need medical care, contact your primary care provider and schedule a visit. Let them know that you are concerned you might have COVID-19.
  • Only contact 911 for emergencies requiring immediate life-saving care and let them know if you are concerned you might have COVID-19.
  • Restrict visits to the hospital emergency room or urgent care — only individuals needing immediate care should visit these facilities. If you must visit an ER or urgent care facility, call ahead and let them know that you are concerned you might have COVID-19.

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