Kentucky PPE stockpile to be complete by end of September

Kentucky PPE stockpile to be complete by end of September
The supplies stored at a Frankfort location have already been used to help people across the commonwealth.
The supplies stored at a Frankfort location have already been used to help people across the commonwealth. (Source: WAVE 3 News)

FRANKFORT, Ky. (WAVE) - Governor Andy Beshear claims Kentucky will be ready to respond if it sees another spike in coronavirus cases.

To do that, it’ll draw on a state stockpile that Beshear announced Monday is nearly complete.

The supplies stored at a Frankfort location have already been used to help people across the commonwealth.

At the start of the pandemic, acquiring PPE was difficult and situation was dire in Kentucky.

“There were times where we truly wondering if there were going to be enough gloves for those walking into the COVID wing,” Beshear said.

Department for Public Health Commissioner Dr. Steven Stack said he first learned about the stockpile five weeks into his job.

Governor Andy Beshear claims Kentucky will be ready to respond if it sees another spike in coronavirus cases.
Governor Andy Beshear claims Kentucky will be ready to respond if it sees another spike in coronavirus cases. (Source: WAVE 3 News)

“The amount of material we had for a typical regional crisis in this state was probably reasonable, but when we looked at the scope of a statewide, nationwide, and international crisis, the amount of resources we had clearly was not sufficient to the task,” Dr. Stack said.

More than half a year later, the warehouse is now home to an increased statewide PPE stockpile.

A donation of 2 million masks from the Ford Motor Company preceded an announcement Monday that some once worried might never happen.

“Kentucky’s inventory of crucial PPE is at its most secure state since this pandemic started,” Beshear said. “Right now, we are ready to meet any future second spike.”

Beshear said some high-end N95 masks and top-grade surgical gowns may still be difficult to acquire and stock.

By the end of September the planned stockpile, which would last 120 days during another spike, will be complete according to Beshear.

“One of the ways we make sure that’s the case is not just in our purchasing, but is in our actions as Kentuckians,” Beshear said.

Beshear added people can still donate, but that taking precautions and protecting others from the virus can be just as helpful.

The governor noted he’s confident that those who’ve donated in the past would help again if needed.

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