Gifts of needed supplies bolster COVID-19 care efforts
Local companies stepped up in a big way to support Lahey Hospital & Medical Center throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, making sure our caregivers have the tools and fuel they need to keep going as we prepare for a possible second surge.
Beverly-based biotech manufacturer LaunchWorks Labs began making and donating testing supplies to Lahey Hospital & Medical Center in September. LaunchWorks’ “vial transport media” are a liquid within a vial used by lab technicians when working with a COVID-19 test swab to be preserved and tested.
“We thought it would be pretty cool to donate to the local hospitals,” said Jeff Kelly, General Manager at LaunchWorks. “People here are really excited that they’re able to help.” LaunchWorks regularly sends 2,500 vials to Lahey, fulfilling almost all of our weekly on-site testing needs, saving the hospital $20,000 per month.
Our testing capability has increased significantly since the pandemic began. Our lab is now performing about 400 on-site tests per day. “I think the whole Lahey community, from us in the lab to the patients we serve, is reaping the benefit of LaunchWorks’ donation,” said Mutasim Elfahal, PhD, DABCC, Lahey’s lead molecular diagnostics scientist.
Jo-Ann Stores Holdings, the parent company of JoAnn Fabrics, donated 2,500 pairs of scrubs for frontline workers, worth $75,000, to Lahey in September. “When I was working on the front lines, I would come to work in clothes that I wouldn’t want to expose to people that had COVID; nor would I want to bring them home,” explained Michael Rosenblatt, MD, MPH, MBA, Lahey’s chief medical officer. Many non-surgical frontline staff are benefiting from the donation, which, along with strict infection control protocols, has helped reduce cross-contamination.
“When it became apparent there was a shortage of PPE at the onset of the pandemic, we wanted to do everything we could to help,” Wade said. “As the largest fabric retailer in the U.S., we were able to quickly shift into making masks and scrubs for our nation’s hospitals and healthcare systems. We are proud to have been able to help protect our frontline workers, including those at Lahey Hospital.”
An avalanche of donations ranged from homemade greeting cards from elementary school students and community members, to snacks and meals, gift cards, Easter candy and custom-made intubation boxes (made by one of our physician’s children) – and much more.
Our Lahey community is deeply grateful for the outpouring of support for our health care heroes.