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Lee Health, NCH working together to ensure supply needs met

There’s a massive undertaking right now to make sure our first responders and health care workers have what they need to stay safe and save lives.

Hospitals in Southwest Florida are coming together to get more protective gear and equipment.

Lee Health announced it just got a new shipment of testing swabs, enough to meet the current need of the community.

When it comes to supplies in general, officials said they’re in good shape for now, but they do anticipate a possible supply challenge in the future, which is why they’re joining forces with their neighbors.

Lee Health and NCH Healthcare System created the “Southwest Florida Stronger Together” campaign, which lets them work together and share resources to meet the community’s need during this healthcare crisis.

“We’re sharing information. We’re talking about staffing, we’re talking about visitor policies, we’re talking about supplies,” said Chris Simoneau, chief foundation and development officer at Lee Health.

Community members can donate to the campaign as well. Lee Health said those funds will go toward critical resources, equipment and supplies to support doctors and nurses.

Donations will also help pay for extra ventilators, protective gear, mobile units, employee relief and more.

“Having funds at our disposal and some flexibility will enable us to be opportunistic, to buy supplies when we need them, where we need them, to travel to get them, etcetera,” said Simoneau.

Meanwhile, Physicians Regional said it’s evaluating its supplies on a daily basis.

It’s also working with Lee Health and NCH to conserve items like masks and hospital gowns and reduce unnecessary use.

“We’re all in this together, and we’re stronger together,” said Simoneau.

Hendry Regional Medical Center said they received supply shipments Thursday night and Friday morning, and they’re working closely with local and state partners.

Officials there said the hospital has enough test kits and they’re confident they can meet the community’s need.

Bayfront Health and DeSoto Memorial Hospital have yet to respond to requests for comment on their supply situation.

Reporter:Veronica Marshall
Writer:Jackie Winchester
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