Calling all seamstresses!
With the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's updated recommendation that cloth face coverings be worn in public settings where other social distancing measures are difficult to maintain, Ascension Via Christi's Wichita hospitals and clinics are now asking the community for help.
"We are seeking donations of cloth masks that can be given to patients and visitors to wear as they enter our hospitals and clinics and to associates whose roles are non-patient facing," says David Alexander, president of the Via Christi Foundation, who is coordinating all community donations for the Wichita area. "We did not originally request these, but with the CDC's recent change of direction they are now needed."
While maintaining the 6-foot social distancing remains important to slowing the spread of COVID-19, the CDC notes that using a simple cloth face coverings can help prevent people who may have the virus and not know it from transmitting it to others. Cloth face coverings fashioned from household items or made at home from common materials at low cost can be used as an additional, voluntary public health measure.
"No specific design is required, but masks with thin elastic loop ears are preferred," says Alexander.
The donations will allow surgical masks or N-95 respirators to continue to be reserved for healthcare workers and other medical first responders, as recommended by current CDC guidance.
Masks can be dropped off at the front entryway of the main entrance at Ascension Via Christi St. Francis between 9 a.m and 3 p.m. weekdays. For more information, call 316-281-5157.