U of U Health, Intermountain not accepting donations of homemade, cloth masks at this time

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Dr. Stephen Anderson, a physician who works in the Emergency Department at the MultiCare Auburn Medical Center in Auburn, Wash., wears a mask and face shield as he poses for a photo before starting his shift, Tuesday, March 17, 2020, in Auburn, Wash., south of Seattle. Anderson said he writes messages on his shields to identify them as his, and this morning he chose the phrase “Stay Safe.” “There just are not enough masks to go around at my hospital,” said Dr. Anderson. “I’ve got a two-day supply of masks so we’re trying to be conservative. You get one in the morning. You clean it and reuse it.” (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren)

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah (ABC4 News) — Recently, many people have offered to donate homemade cloth masks to healthcare workers in order to support the COVID-19 response, according to Jess Gomez, Director of Media Relations Intermountain Healthcare.

Related: Utah physician legislators urge businesses to donate personal protective equipment

Gomez said though Intermountain Healthcare and University of Utah Health appreciate the community’s generosity and have requested donations of personal protective equipment, homemade cloth masks fail to provide the appropriate level of antimicrobial protection for those who come in close contact with patients suffering from COVID-19.

As such, University of Utah Health and Intermountain hospitals and clinics cannot accept cloth masks at this time. However, they are working with several charitable organizations in the state to develop a way for the community to help in making medical grade masks.

In order to prevent the spread of COVID-19, Intermountain and U of U Health will not be accepting toy, blanket, food, or other physical items as donations at this time. They request that the community avoid calling COVID-19 hotlines to ask about donations in order to leave these lines open for those who require medical attention.

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