Wisconsin Coronavirus: Bellin Health encouraging community to make masks, offers pattern instructions

Coronavirus
FRIDAY 4/3/2020 10:35 a.m.

GREEN BAY, Wis. (WFRV) – Bellin Health is now encouraging the community to sew and donate face masks for its healthcare workers after previously asking the community to pause on production.

Latest coronavirus in Wisconsin updates

In a Friday morning tweet, Bellin Health is offering pattern instructions and a photo tutorial for homemade masks, but add that they will accept other mask patterns.

The Wisconsin Face Mask Warriors are coordinating delivery. Those who make homemade masks are asked to drop them off at 1718 Velp Avenue, Suite F in Green Bay and label the masks “Bellin.” This will allow masks to be delivered to Bellin.

Bellin Health asking community to hold off on sewing masks for now

THURSDAY 3/26/2020 11:15 a.m.

GREEN BAY, Wis. (WFRV) – Bellin Health is asking the public to “please hold off on sewing masks for now.”

Latest coronavirus in Wisconsin updates

According to a Thursday morning tweet, Bellin Health says they are currently evaluating best practices for cloth masks to ensure volunteers create a product that can be used in an extreme emergency.

“We are grateful for the support and generosity of everyone willing to help and will let everyone know when itโ€™s ‘a go’ to start sewing!” Bellin Health added.

Jim Lynett, System Director of Supply Chain at Bellin Health, tells WFRV Local 5 Bellin Health is working to test the effectiveness of the masks they have already received from the community. The results of that testing are expected to return quickly.

Lynett adds that Bellin is testing the masks to make sure they work.

“We’ve never used cloth masks like this before,” Lynett explains.

If the masks are effective, Lynett says they will only be used in an extreme emergency.

On Wednesday, WFRV Local 5 brought you a story about a group in Kewaunee who began making masks after an RN Supervisor from Bellin Hospital approached the President of the Kewaunee Artisan Center Cheryl Daul.

Related: Wisconsin asks FEMA for help in obtaining over 109,000 protective medical supplies

State Representative David Steffen (R-Green Bay) announced Wednesday he had submitted a formal request to Governor Tony Evers and the Department of Corrections Secretary Kevin Carr to transition the textile production program at Green Bay Correctional Institution from producing clothing for inmates to creating masks for healthcare workers and first responders.

Earlier this week, Dr. Ryan Westergaard, Chief Medical Officer of the Bureau of Communicable Diseases, said during a briefing with Governor Tony Evers that there is currently no research to show homemade masks are effective. Dr. Westergaard did add that, despite this, homemade masks are a possible alternative. The N95 masks or surgical masks are considered the best options at this time.

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