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Kansas City Personal Protective Equipment Drive

Last Updated: April 22, 2020


Kansas City PPE is a group of healthcare students, workers, and friends who are collecting PPE donations for our local frontline hospitals. The volunteers are made up of 130 healthcare students associated with the University of Missouri Kansas City (MS2-MS4s, dental and PA students), along with a handful of UMKC surgery residents, engineers, and web designers. A group of medical students were working on creating a PPE drive for UMKC's affiliated hospitals when they stumbled upon a smaller group doing the same thing on social media. Both groups teamed up to create KC PPE Drive to raise PPE for all of the frontline hospitals in Kansas City! Leaders of KC PPE have collaborated and established a formal connection with the Deans of UMKC Medical and Dental Schools, along with physician advocates from surrounding hospitals such as Children's Mercy Hospital and Truman Medical Center, to keep everyone informed on our progress. 

The majority of the volunteers are making phone calls to possible donors across multiple sectors, including auto shops, the beauty industry, construction, cleaning services, farming, and big corporations. Donors fill out a donation form; a group of medical students known as the Response Team monitors all the donations and coordinates PPE drop off or pick up with the donors. Members of the Distribution Team, using social distancing precautions, pick up PPE from donors who are unable to drop off the equipment at one of the designated drop-off sites. Once the drop site is full, a small number of students from the Distribution Team will divide all of the donations equally and deliver it to hospitals while wearing PPE themselves. 

In addition to the collection and distribution of PPE, KC PPE is working on several different projects. Our UMKC surgical residents are collecting "blue wrap", or the wrapping around sterile surgical trays, from local hospitals and students are transporting this material to local organizations who have offered to help create a hand-sewn mask. Another UMKC surgery resident is currently working with Truman Medical Center's Incident Command to on approval for a 3D printed mask, while medical students and mechanical science engineers are working on a literature review on the safety of PLA, PETG, and ABS materials for the mask. KC PPE's social media has also taken off with the help of local web designers and animators who are contributing videos. Through social media, we are able to answer questions about COVID-19 while simultaneously inspiring KC by celebrating our donors. Former Chief's player, Ted McKnight, supplied us with a video of himself endorsing our cause! 


Koral Shah, University of Missouri Kansas City School of Medicine (ks338@mail.umkc.edu)
Nick Yeisley, University of Missouri Kansas City School of Medicine (nyeisley@gmail.com)