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Local retired nurse makes masks for doctors, nurses

Stores, hospitals around U.S. running out of masks
Posted at 10:22 PM, Mar 22, 2020
and last updated 2020-03-22 23:33:46-04

LEAWOOD, Kan. — Stores and hospitals around the United States are running out of masks because of the coronavirus.

"We are in desperate need of the N95 masks, gloves, more testing supplies as well since we don’t know then number we will receive in the future," said Dr. Toni Zink, adult senior health and international medicine physician at Samuel Rodgers Health Center.

So, people are stepping up and getting creative by making homemade masks.

"My neighbor sent me a video on how to make these and how the CDC has changed the restrictions so that these masks, basically saying they are better than nothing," said Bernadette Kaplan, of Leawood.

She is a retired intensive-care unit nurse and heard about the shortage and said she wanted to help. So she decided to learn how to make the masks.

"I love to sew, and I have a big stash of fabric that I have collected over the years," Kaplan said. "The thing I really only needed was the elastic."

Her neighbors got her more supplies and off she went.

"I have a few things of elastic. A neighbor of mine called last night. She got on Overstock.com and we got a couple of rolls of 288 yards," she said.

That is enough to make up to 600 masks. So far, she has made dozens.

Kaplan gives each person two masks, places them on her front door step and they can pick them up. She posted her efforts on Facebook and got an outpouring of not only people needing masks, but support.

The retired nurse now wants other sewing lovers to step up to make these homemade masks and help their community.

"I feel like I am doing my part this way rather than sitting on the couch and watching TV," Kaplan said.

Here is a link to learn how to make homemade masks.