Over 800 sets of scrubs for nurses, including those who are visiting palliative care patients in their homes, have been made for free by a company in county Louth.
Some are in brightly coloured and designed fabrics, which were also donated, and it is hoped that other companies around the country could copy the initiative.
The scrubs were designed, cut and sewn by Ardee Coach Trim in Ardee, whose general manager Eoin Lennon said nurses and other frontline workers “know they are probably going to get Covid-19 at some stage but they still smile and head into work.”
The company is more used to making seating and interiors for large transport vehicles and the NTA and said it did not hesitate to support the nurses when they realised they needed the clothing made.
Clinical Nurse Specialist Maeve Hennessy asked on social media for people and places to donate material for the scrubs and said, “the fabrics came flooding in. They had that much fabric they were able to make 800 sets of scrubs.”
Maeve works with the palliative care team that provides a service for patients in the North East region of Louth, Meath, Cavan and Monaghan, in their homes.
Normally the specialist nurses making such visits would wear their own clothes.
However with the Covid-19 pandemic they will not wear their own clothes but instead wear the scrubs and a new pair will be worn for each patient.
300 sets will be used by the palliative care service and will not be in the clinical green or blue colours but instead in different colours or patterns to try and keep with providing care in the home.
Some will be suitable for caring for children.
If PPE is needed, it will go on over the scrubs.
When the scrubs are taken off they are put into a special clinical waste bag that goes into the washing machine with the scrubs.
The remaining 500 sets of scrubs will be donated to Our Lady of Lourdes Hosptial, Drogheda.
Maeve said that there are companies already making scrubs but the demand is great and she would like to see scrubs being used not just by nurses but by carers and home helps too as Covid is now primarily acquired in the community.
Meave said, “if there were other industries around the country where it was safe to do this and help out, I think it would make a huge difference.”
Meanwhile a GoFundMe page has been set up to raise funds so Ardee Coach Trim, who have made the 800 for free, can continue to make more scrubs at a minimum loss. A number of single large donations have already been made.