State to launch website to create PPE stockpile for COVID-19

(AP Photo/Ted S. Warren)
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MADISON, Wis. (WMTV)-- Wisconsin officials will be launching a new site in the next 48 hours to create a stockpile of personal protective equipment for medical care providers and first responders.

Brig. Gen. Paul Knapp, the Adjutant General for the Wisconsin National Guard, announced the creation of a personal protective equipment, commonly referred to as "PPE", buy-back program.

The website would take any PPE donation or offer to buy back any PPE that is no longer needed because a business has closed during the COVID-19 outbreak in Wisconsin.

Knapp said they are hoping to reprioritize these items for medical workers and first responders. In particular, they need N95 masks, face masks, gloves, isolation gowns, face shields, surgical gowns, and thermometers.

The items collected will then be put in a secure warehouse and then distributed by the National Guard.

Governor Tony Evers announced there is a cache of medical supplies on its way to Wisconsin.

A recent FEMA request included 50,000 non-surgical masks, 10,000 face shields, 11,000 coveralls, 3,000 N95 masks, and 35,000 pairs of gloves for first responders.

State Health Secretary-Designee Andrea Palm said supplies will be arriving in the state from a federal stockpile in the coming days.

She said there would be 54,709 N95 masks, 130,326 surgical masks, 24,816 face shields, 20,233 surgical gowns, 104 coveralls, and 72,044 pairs of gloves for health care workers.

Evers stressed the requests and supplies are not the end point, but emphasized its a critical start as the state seeks out other sources for PPE.