By SCOTT COTTOS
As time goes on with the coronavirus pandemic, more people and agencies in more communities are being affected.
ProMedica Fostoria Community Hospital can be added to the list as needing face masks and mask covers to help prevent the spread of the highly contagious and potentially deadly virus, according to Janet Dickman, administrative assistant at the hospital.
Residents of Fostoria and the surrounding area are being asked to make and donate masks for hospitals to use during the crisis.
Sarah Stephens Krupp, Fostoria Area Chamber of Commerce chamber/small business director, helped spread the word with an email to members Wednesday.
“I know, based on what I’ve seen on social media, that there are people who are actively working on these,” Stephens Krupp said in a phone conversation Wednesday afternoon. “I just have great faith in this community that we’ll pull together and support the hospital in this and in every other avenue of getting through this and recovery.”
Dickman expressed similar thoughts and noted that Fostoria is known for how it rallies around a cause.
“They step right up,” she said. “It definitely is a community project and we do appreciate the help we get from the community.”
Two types of masks can be made, Dickman said: tight-fitting N95 respirators and more loosely fitting surgical masks. She said surgical masks are being emphasized for the coming week.
Some guidelines on making masks from website promedica.org include: use 100-percent cotton, tightly woven fabric and 100 percent cotton thread; masks will be laundered and sanitized after they are dropped off; masks should only be made in non-smoking homes.
Also, the website suggests people do not violate social-distancing orders by going out to buy materials specifically for masks and should use material they have on hand.
Masks should be placed in a plastic bag and dropped off at the hospital on Mondays and Thursdays between noon and 2 p.m., and 5:30 to 6:30 p.m. Hospital personnel will be at Entrance 3, which faces Van Buren Street, to accept the donations.
Dickman said the hospital has a limited amount of material and elastic garnered from headbands to give to people who want to make masks. She said the material and elastic can be obtained at the drop-off station.
More details on the mask project can be found on Page A8.