Cabrini University’s Science Department contributed unused personal protective equipment (PPE) from its labs to Bryn Mawr Hospital, part of Main Line Health, to aid front-line healthcare workers battling the coronavirus pandemic. Amid intense political discourse around the availability and allocation of PPE, Cabrini donated approximately 2,000 pairs of disposable gloves, 400 lab coats, and 20 safety goggles on April 7.
In March, while watching a news report of PPE shortages in the tri-state area, Cynthia McGauley (MEd ’11), Cabrini’s Laboratory Manager and Chemical Safety Hygiene Officer, realized that PPE stock on shuttered university campuses would soon be needed at hospitals nationwide.
I knew that there were supplies going unused on campus that would be of great value to the local medical community,” McGauley, said. “I felt the higher education community was well-equipped to supply these valiant healthcare workers.”
McGauley consulted with Richard J. Thompson, PhD, Dean of Natural Sciences and Allied Health, as well as Brian Eury, Chief of Staff and Vice President of External Relations, who routed the PPE donation to Bryn Mawr Hospital.
At the hospital, the shipment of gloves, lab coats and goggles were a welcome addition to its PPE supply, which has been in use around-the-clock since the epidemic reached the East Coast.
“We are incredibly grateful to Cabrini University for their donation of PPE,” said Andrea Gilbert, President, Bryn Mawr Hospital. “The community has come together in so many ways to demonstrate their support of health care workers on the frontline. Cabrini has been a great partner to Bryn Mawr Hospital over the years, and we’re so appreciative of their help during this challenging time.”
For McGauley, proactive safety measures are a regular part of the job at Cabrini. She urges students in the labs to practice extra vigilance with regard to sanitization and contamination at the beginning of each spring semester—the start of the traditional cold and flu season. As it became apparent that this flu season was in fact the beginning of a worldwide pandemic, the scope of these precautions expanded at Cabrini.
“We have started virtual discussions among the school safety committee to address what we can be doing proactively to be safe for the Fall 2020 semester,” she said. “From increased hand sanitization stations and scheduled cleanings to advanced coordination of PPE allotment, we’re working to ensure our students, staff and faculty are comfortable working and learning in our campus labs.”