ODESSA, Texas (Big 2/Fox 24) – It is all hands on deck for a group of community leaders. Dr. Faye Armstrong with Medical Center Hospital launched “Masks of Medics Odessa TX.” It a group of residents making and delivering medical masks to our local healthcare professionals.
“It is scary, it’s scary for everyone, but I think that everybody helping each other as a community, kind of like this thing we’re doing, is helpful,” said volunteer, Lou Martinez.
“Anyone that knows Dr. Armstrong knows that she has a golden heart. She posted on Facebook that she had a project. When she mentioned that it was making of the masks, I thought it was really really good. It’s kind of a way to help your community.”
Armstrong says she saw a dire need for medical gear. Millions of healthcare professionals are struggling to get their hands on necessary equipment not just locally, but globally. This led her to launch the Facebook group, and she says the response has been overwhelming.
“I just want to thank the people in this community. We are in such a wonderful place. After the shooting last year and now to see the response to the needs for supplies here… We’re just so blessed to be here,” said Armstrong.
The group now has nearly 300 volunteers, making up a supply chain of workers including drivers, seamstresses and those who donate materials.
Volunteer, Dawn Weeks, says it is made up of people from all walks of life.
“Everybody wants to help out and have something they can do to be a part, and this has been a great way to assure our medical professionals – we’re with you, you’re going to have what you need, we’re working on it.”
Armstrong says the masks are not quite as effective as the N-95 masks professionals use for protection against COVID-19, but they are necessary, and sufficient, for all other surgical procedures. Medical Center Hospital only has enough supply of surgical masks to last them three weeks.
“This is just to keep the operating room going. Because even with coronavirus here, the other problems that people have don’t go away,” explained Armstrong.
Their goal is to finish 2,000 masks. The group says anyone can contribute in being a part of the solution. If you would like to get involved or make a monetary donation, click here.