Hospital gets supply of PPE from Ford Motor Company

  • A staffer shows off one of the new gowns Habersham Medical Center purchased from Ford Motor Company.
    A staffer shows off one of the new gowns Habersham Medical Center purchased from Ford Motor Company.

   Habersham Medical Center obtained a supply of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) from Ford Motor Company late last week.

   HMC purchased 120 surgical gowns and 5,000 full face shields to aid staffers in the continuing battle against COVID-19. The gowns are washable up to 50 times.

   “While they can be re-used, we will need more. So in addition to hand sewn masks, our community members can also make hand sewn gowns for us as well,” said Kesha Clinkscale, HMC’s Vice President of Culture and Wellness. “We need our community to continue to rally around us and help our hometown hospital save lives.”

   As of Tuesday afternoon, Georgia’s Department of Health recorded 47,899 positive COVID-19 cases statewide with 2,089 Georgians killed.

   Habersham County has seen 530 positive cases with 23 deaths. Habersham County has only reported 24 new cases since May 15, indicating a drop in the weekly progression rate.

   Dave Palmer, District 2 Public Health spokesman, would not commit to the idea that the virus has “peaked” as some health organizations have suggested.

   “As you know, viruses are unpredictable, but we are hopeful that the number of positive cases will continue to slow,” Palmer said. “Currently, the number of new positive cases from the testing that we are doing locally, has dropped to around 10% or slightly less. This is from 13-15% just a few weeks ago.”

   HMC did not receive any of the state’s distributed supply of remdesivir because it did not meet the requirements for federal criteria for treatment including COVID-19 positive patients on ventilators, in addition to patients currently being treated with extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO), a machine that takes over the work of the heart and lungs, a release from DPH stated.

   The state is distributing 18,440 vials of the drug received from the federal government to 85 hospitals in Georgia, enough to treat about 1,676 patients with COVID-19 infection, depending on the duration of an individual’s illness and treatment needs.

   Remdesivir is an antiviral medicine being used to treat hospitalized patients with serious symptoms caused by COVID-19 like low oxygen levels or pneumonia. It has been found to shorten the duration of disease in patients being treated in inpatient hospital settings. Remdesivir is given intravenously and decreases the amount of coronavirus in the body, helping patients recover faster.