Tuesday, April 14, 2020

USA medical students seek PPE donations for health workers

Amanda Atkins, left, and Macy Vickers, third-year students at the USA College of Medicine, are collections donations of PPE for USA Health frontline workers.
Two third-year medical students at the University of South Alabama College of Medicine are joining in the effort to ensure that the healthcare heroes at USA Health are fully supported in the fight against COVID-19. For their part, the students are accepting donations of personal protective equipment (PPE) for frontline workers at USA.

The idea to get students involved came when Macy Vickers and Amanda Atkins learned that friends at another medical school had started a medical supply drive to collect PPE for medical providers. After talking with leadership at USA Health to get a list of items that would be particularly useful, the students quickly recruited other USA medical students to volunteer and began contacting local business around Mobile for donations.

“We are asking the businesses to donate anything they may have to help protect our healthcare workers, such as masks, nitrile gloves, face shields and medical gowns,” Vickers said. “There are a variety of businesses who are not operating right now and have extra supplies. People have already been so generous!”

According to Vickers, her motivation to help was partially out of gratitude to the physicians, nurses, and staff at USA Health who have taught her so much in her time as a medical student. Vickers, who is from Mobile and will be applying for an OB-GYN residency in the fall, said, “It has been so meaningful to have something to do to help those who are in the field that I will soon join.”

“I wanted to get involved because I saw what a huge need there was for medical supplies during this pandemic,” said Atkins, who is from Birmingham and will be applying for an otolaryngology residency. “I am so excited to have a tangible way to help keep our healthcare workers safe. Our faculty and staff are incredibly brave, and I’m so thankful for everything they’re doing to fight this pandemic.”

Vickers’ and Atkins’ efforts dovetail with similar outreach endeavors around USA Health. USA Health’s Pandemic Emergency Fund supports USA Health and its critical needs in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. South CARES Student Emergency Fund directs critical resources to students who find themselves with urgent expenses they are unprepared to meet. You can donate to both at southalabama.edu/usaresponds.

To contribute PPE to the supply drive, contact mjv1721@jagmail.southalabama.edu or aki1921@jagmail.southalabama.edu.

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