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Green Building News

Do You Have Spare Respirators?

Healthcare workers are in need of 3M N95 and N100 cartridges for protection from COVID-19. If you have spares in your shop then please consider donating them to a local hospital, health authority, or first-responder group.

If you’re like me, sometimes you feel like there isn’t anything you can do to help brave medical professionals on the front lines fighting the coronavirus. Well, if you’re the type that buys in bulk, and you have extra dust masks, respirators, or respirator cartridges, consider yourself lucky. There is something significant you can do to help.

We recently received the following email from James Pring, a reader who works as a scientist.

Covid protection for healthcare workers needs a lot of those 3M N95 and N100 3M cartridges. If listeners have spares in their shop (new and unopened) then PLEASE consider donating to a local hospital, health authority, or first responder group. Supplies will become scarce and if you have spares, do something good with them.

I had heard that there was a run on respirators in the stores, but I didn’t know that there was a dire need in hospitals. After posting his message to our social media channels, the reaction from other medical professionals confirmed Mr. Pring’s sentiments.

There were a few questions asking if specific models or ratings were needed. At this time we’re not in a position to get into specifics, and I’d say it’s best to leave that up to your local medical professionals.

We’re all in this together, and let’s get the supplies to those who need them the most.

*3/21/20 update – The need is still real people. So real that CNN is reporting on James’ efforts to get the word out.


Note from GBA: This is a repost from FineWoodworking.com. We are currently looking into options for donations and we will add more information is we find an straightforward opportunities for you to donate. If you have helpful information, please share in the comments below. Thanks everyone.

Update from Mark Bartosik: 

Other links with information about donating:
https://ppetonyc.wixsite.com/nycppe/
https://getusppe.org/
Use hashtag #GetMePPE on social media.

Update from Zephyr7: 

If you’re in the area of northern Michigan, this is what the local hospital system is looking for.

Another article with lots of options to donate personal protective equipment (PPE):

Check out this article from CBS News. It includes lots of opportunities to donate your PPE.

Update from Mark Bartosik:

From the Bloomberg business insider article is appears that the N95 (often made by 3M) disposable mask is the most useful/needed.

GBA: It maybe a good idea to update the photo to a simple white 3M N95 disposable mask (shown right). As that’s what’s needed more than the P100 mask you currently have in the picture.

More links for donating:
https://www.mask-match.com/
https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSdgEtdv00mF7Q9ve0e5Y4jvTKiWGFTCCCWZlasxnUuhS_-hLA/viewform
https://www.businessinsider.com/people-donating-face-masks-in-droves-to-protect-hospital-workers-2020-3

Update from Kevin Henry:

If there are no local facilities requesting donations you can also use mask-match.com. They will pair you directly with a health care provider who needs masks, and you just drop them in the mail. I did this with my woodworking N95 respirators and the process was straightforward.

9 Comments

  1. Andy CD Zone 5 - NW Ohio | | #1

    Thank you, GBA. Please, DONATE YOUR N95's TO A HOSPITAL OR EMS AGENCY NOW! I am a volunteer EMT in a small rural town. I was issued one N95, a disposable one-time use mask, and told to put my name on it since it's all we have or will get for all our runs in the next weeks. Surgical masks are our first use, they are adequate ('good enough"?) for general patient contact in the field. N95's are used with airway procedures; when patient's spit may become aerosolized and far more dangerous. They are critical to protect ALL workers in hospitals. No person who is not doing critical patient care needs an N95. Please donate them now, you will quite literally save lives.

  2. Mark Bartosik | | #2

    Other links with information about donating:
    https://ppetonyc.wixsite.com/nycppe/
    https://getusppe.org/
    hashtag #GetMePPE

  3. Zephyr7 | | #3

    If you’re in the area of northern Michigan, this is what the local hospital system is looking for:

    Bill

  4. Mark Bartosik | | #4

    From the Bloomberg business insider article is appears that the N95 (often made by 3M) disposable mask is the most useful/needed.

    GBA: It maybe a good idea to update the photo to a simple white 3M N95 disposable mask. As that's what's needed more than the P100 mask you currently have in the picture.

    More links for donating:
    https://www.mask-match.com/
    https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSdgEtdv00mF7Q9ve0e5Y4jvTKiWGFTCCCWZlasxnUuhS_-hLA/viewform
    https://www.businessinsider.com/people-donating-face-masks-in-droves-to-protect-hospital-workers-2020-3

    1. Dane Moxlow | | #6

      The P100 as pictured is perfectly acceptable although I'm sure would be much more uncomfortable long term for a variety of reasons. I'm sure most everyone is aware but for those that aren't:
      N= not oil resistant
      P=oil proof
      Number refers to percentage of airborne particles filtered (with a grain of salt if you read the fine print).

      They'll take anything at this point.

      1. David Argilla | | #7

        Due to the exhalation valve, P 100's might not be as protective for patients and other personnel not wearing masks, ie if the wearer is infected. But yes, better than a handkerchief.

  5. Kevin Henry | | #5

    If there are no local facilities requesting donations you can also use mask-match.com. They will pair you directly with a health care provider who needs masks, and you just drop them in the mail. I did this with my woodworking N95 respirators and the process was straightforward.

  6. User avater GBA Editor
    Brian Pontolilo | | #8

    The post has been updated with latest comments/resources.

    Thanks everyone.

  7. User avater
    Peter Engle | | #9

    The daughter of a friend is an ER doc in Philadelphia. Their hospital is simply unable to get masks, even for the ER. The doctors are literally on their own to get gear. She is of Asian descent and very petite. The normal sized disposable masks don't fit. She wears a half-face cartridge respirator that fits, but cannot get canisters for it. I had two sets of P100 canisters in my kit that I donated. She plans to "bake" them after use to kill any pathogens so that they can be re-used. This is what we've come to. I also had a box of "small" N95 masks in my workshop because my wife has a small face. I was unsure if they had any value because the box has been open for a couple of years. At this point, they're taking anything they can get. Anything is better than nothing.

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