Presbyterian College School of Pharmacy responded quickly when the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC) issued an urgent request to academic institutions for personal protective equipment on Friday, March 20.
As the COVID-19 pandemic accelerates, a top concern for those in the healthcare field is access to this equipment.
The demand exceeds the supply
“The demand for personal protective equipment is currently greater than the available supply,” said Dr. Kurt Wargo, dean of the School of Pharmacy.
When he heard the request from DHEC, Wargo approved the donation of many of the supplies in the School’s hospital simulation lab.
“We are facing an unprecedented time in our world’s history,” Wargo said.
“We need to do our part to help fight this viral pandemic. Helping those in need is what pharmacists are known for, and it’s simply the right thing to do in this case.”
The School of Pharmacy donated more than 1,000 pieces of personal protective equipment, including:
- alcohol pads
- eye protection
- hand sanitizer
- hand soap
- medical gowns
Dr. Tiffaney Threatt, associate professor of pharmacy and director of the PCSP Wellness Center, helped gather the supplies to send to DHEC. The organization then distributed the items to first responders, hospitals and nursing homes.
Serving healthcare workers
“Many healthcare workers are serving at full capacity during this time and risking their own safety,” Wargo said.
“In this national and global response, healthcare workers are serving on the frontline and must be protected as a valuable yet vulnerable resource. Providing adequate equipment is the first step.”
Hopefully, the manufacturing supply of personal protective equipment will soon catch up with the demand, Wargo says. Until then, DHEC will continue to collect supplies and distribute them to facilities and healthcare workers in need.
During the pandemic, Wargo and others at the PC School of Pharmacy have also worked with Good Shepherd Free Medical Clinic in Laurens to provide emergency supplies of medications to patients in need.
“‘While we live, we serve’ is more than a campus motto for Presbyterian College,” Wargo said. “They’re words that students, alumni, faculty and staff truly live by.
“In uncertain times such as these, there is even more reason to serve others.”