Veolia North America is in the process of delivering 40,000 surgical masks to many hospitals.
Glens Falls Hospital will receive 2,000 masks.
Other hospitals are in New York City, Houston, Philadelphia, Albuquerque, Colton, California (near San Bernardino) and Montreal.
Veolia has held the masks in storage since the bird flu virus 12 years ago. At that time, Veolia Water created a stockpile because the company might need them while keeping drinking water going during a crisis.
“So for the past decade, Veolia has kept a strategic stockpile of masks in safe storage for the day they would be needed,” the company said in a press release. “Unfortunately, that day is here.”
Many nurses want N95 masks, but the surgical masks are typically used to prevent the spread of droplet-borne illnesses like the flu. With few N95 masks available, many hospitals are using surgical masks, including Glens Falls Hospital.
“The need for surgical masks is so great at the present time that we’re seeing press reports of seamstresses, dry cleaners and quilters sewing masks using fabric remnants. We’re glad we can do our part to provide this crucial (personal protective equipment) to support patients and medical professionals who need it most,” said Mike Richter, vice president of corporate health and safety at Veolia North America.
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