Ohio dentists donate PPE to local hospitals, EMAs

ODA President Dr. Sharon Parsons donates excess gloves and masks to a local hospital.

Many Ohio dentists and dental societies have donated excess PPE to their local hospitals or emergency management agencies during the COVID-19 pandemic.

“As most of you know, I donated some PPE from my office to help my medical colleagues,” said ODA President Dr. Sharon Parsons. “Yes, it did put me a little bit behind on acquiring all that I need to reopen, but for me it was the right thing to do.  Our governor stated that he needed us to do that to help keep people on the front lines of fighting this virus safe.”

At the beginning of the pandemic, many hospitals at the front lines of treating COVID-19 patients reported a shortage of PPE. Accordingly, Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine called on Ohioans to donate any excess PPE including masks, gloves, face shields, gowns, etc. 

“Our office is typically well-stocked with the supplies we need and use on a regular basis,” said Dr. Emily Lammers, an endodontist in Beavercreek. “As an endodontist, I knew that my staff would need PPE to see emergency patients and when our office re-opened, but I also knew that we had an excess of PPE that could be better used elsewhere. I donated gloves and surgical masks to the Greene County Department of Health. When I dropped off my donation, the staff was extremely grateful and told me that there were already nursing homes in our county reporting that they didn’t have any masks.”

Many ODA members have reported that they donated PPE from their personal supplies, including:

  • Over 145,000 pairs of gloves.
  • Over 43,000 masks including N-95 masks.
  • Over 6,000 gowns.
  • Over 20,000 other miscellaneous items like hand sanitizer and disinfection wipes.

Additionally, many dentists who had planned to hold Give Kids A Smile events this spring but were unable to do so donated excess supplies that they had received for their events, including 1,000 gloves and 250 masks.

“As health care providers we should all look out for each other, especially during a pandemic,” Lammers said. “I was glad that I was able to do something to help and I believe that everyone has the opportunity to make a difference. I am grateful for the ODA as they have been keeping us up-to-date with the most current information and advocating for a safe re-opening of all dental offices in the state of Ohio.”

In addition to individual dentists, some dental societies organized donations of supplies as well.

Dr. John Kramer along with other dentists in the Eastern Ohio Dental Society organized a collection of PPE, including gloves, masks and CaviWipes that they donated to the Belmont County Emergency Management Agency and the St. Clairsville Fire Department.

“The director was very happy and grateful to receive our supplies,” Kramer said. “At the time, he told me they only had a 7-day supply for first responders/hospital/emergency personnel. Like most dentists, we are trying to do our part in this section of Ohio.”

The Dayton Dental Society also organized a PPE drive, where they donated gloves, masks, gowns and patient drapes to their local hospital.

The ODA has received several reports from local emergency management agencies who are now returning the favor and providing PPE back to dental offices as they begin to reopen to provide regular patient care.