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Indiana National Guard delivering much-needed medical supplies to hospitals

Holcomb addresses media on March 26

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — Much-needed medical supplies were on the way to hospitals and county health departments across the state on Thursday. The Indiana National Guard and other state agencies are working to get those supplies into the hands of healthcare workers as fast as possible.

Think of what’s inside the boxes as real, tangible tools to help stop the spread of COVID-19.

“Inside the pallets are personal protective equipment. That’s the equipment that providers wear in order to prevent them from contracting the virus,” said Gen. Dale Lyles, the 59th Adjutant General of Indiana. 

N95 masks, face shields, surgical gowns, and exam gloves were being distributed Thursday. ​State Health Commissioner Dr. Kris Box said Wednesday, the state got at least four trucks worth of supplies.​ All of it will go directly to Indiana healthcare workers fighting on the front lines of the coronavirus pandemic.​

“It’s vitally important,” said Lyles. “Without that protective equipment, they could expose themselves to the virus.” 

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The boxes, which come from the federal government’s Strategic National Stockpile of medical supplies, were headed to hospitals and county health departments across the state of Indiana Thursday. ​

“It’s hugely important, because we know nationwide and also here in Indiana, those things are so vital, but they’re also running out. Day-by-day, hour-by-hour, minute-by-minute,” said Indiana State Police 1st Sgt. Ron Galaviz.

It’s a huge coordinated effort with the Indiana’s National Guard, Indiana State Police, and Indiana’s Department of Transportation.​

“When we get that phone call, we’re going to make sure you get what you need.” said J.D. Brooks, statewide highway maintenance director for Indiana’s Department of Transportation.  

The state has approved at least 135 companies to help, including RV and auto manufacturers switching lines to help make shields, masks, and other personal protective equipment.​

“I’ll tell you, inside Indiana, Governor Holcomb’s strategy to mitigate this virus is working,” said Lyles.

ISP is escorting all of the supplies to their destinations. The supplies will reach the county health departments and hospitals across the state by the end of Thursday.

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