The WHO designated the outbreak of the respiratory illness caused by the deadly Coronavirus on January 30, 2020. At that time, there were more than 9,900 confirmed cases and 213 confirmed deaths. On February 10, 2020, a week and a half later, the number of cases had risen to 40,000 worldwide and the death toll has passed 1000.
Most of the cases are in mainland China. However, cases have been reported in more than 28 countries, including the U.S. Because of the rapid spread of the virus, these statistics may soon be outdated. Check on the CDC’s coronavirus page for the latest updates.
MedShare Responds (Again)
On February 6, the WHO declared a shortage of N95 masks as well as isolation gowns. This personal protective equipment is critically important in helping to prevent the spread of the disease.
MedShare, an Atlanta-based humanitarian aid organization dedicated to global health, is partnering with The Coca-Cola Foundation and The UPS Foundation to send 1.8 million respirator masks to China in response to the coronavirus outbreak. Click here to view an ABC news segment as well as a story about a joint press conference to announce the donation that was held today (February 9, 2020).
An urgent need for personal protective equipment
As the coronavirus outbreak intensifies, there is an urgent need for personal protective equipment, including respirator masks and isolation gowns that can help prevent further spread of the virus.
In addition to the 1.8 million masks, MedShare will also be supplying 80,000 isolation gowns, for a total value of $780,000.
This latest relief effort follows the initial shipment of 800,000 masks that MedShare sent to Hubei Province, China on February 1, 2020. This brings the total number of masks supplied by MedShare in response to the coronavirus outbreak to 2.6 million with a total value of more than $1.2 million.
Partnering with The Coca-Cola Foundation and The UPS Foundation
The Coca-Cola Foundation is supporting this humanitarian relief effort with a $500,000 grant. UPS and The UPS Foundation will provide in-kind air and ground transportation of the supplies to China.
In a press release on 2/10/20, Helen Smith Price, President, The Coca-Cola Foundation was quoted as saying,
“We are all concerned about everyone impacted by the coronavirus outbreak in China. We are using our resources to provide protective supplies for hospitals in China. As a longtime partner of MedShare, we are proud to support their critical relief efforts in impacted communities.”
The shipment of relief supplies will arrive in Shanghai on Friday, February 14. It will then will be delivered to both Shanghai and Hubei Province.
MedShare is working with Shanghai Soong Ching Ling Foundation and Shanghai Charity Foundation to distribute the supplies in Shanghai. The largest portion of the supplies will be provided to the Shanghai Public Health Clinical Center and Children’s Hospital of Fudan University. These hospitals are designated for coronavirus treatment in Shanghai. The supplies for Hubei Province will be distributed through our partners at Project HOPE.
Eduardo Martinez, president of The UPS Foundation and UPS chief diversity and inclusion officer stated,
“In collaboration with our relief partners earlier this month, UPS’s global freight forwarding network delivered more than 2 million masks to relief workers in China. This new effort with our partners at MedShare and other organizations providing support will bring that total to 4 million masks. For the individuals receiving this aid, this could mean everything.”
The Importance of Partnerships
As part of its disaster preparedness planning, MedShare works closely with its partners throughout the year to collect available surplus supplies. This allows them to be equipped to provide aid in times of need.
MedShare is well-positioned to respond to the coronavirus global health emergency as a result of the generous support of its partners at Henry Schein and ASP Global. These companies prepositioned products with us specifically for disaster relief efforts.
According to Charles Redding, MedShare CEO and President,
“This effort wouldn’t be possible without the strong partnerships we’ve built both in the U.S. and around the world. Through these partnerships, MedShare is able to provide relief and have a meaningful impact by helping medical personnel who are fighting on the frontlines to contain the coronavirus.”
In an earlier version of this story, Redding also noted his prior experience in the region, saying,
“I’ve lived and worked in China, so I realize that as much as we all want to help, the key is infrastructure. We are glad to work with the kind of partners who can deploy supplies where are needed most.”
MedShare will continue to work with its partners on the ground in China to assess the need and support the effort to fight the coronavirus outbreak.
MedShare MedShare is a 501c(3) humanitarian aid organization dedicated to improving the quality of life of people, communities, and our planet by sourcing and directly delivering surplus medical supplies and equipment to communities in need around the world. For more information, please
If you want to contribute to MedShare, coronavirus response efforts and learn more about our work to support this global health emergency, visit the MedShare’s coronavirus donation page.
Call to action
If you’d like to get involved, there are several ways that you can help to support our efforts.