Over the past month, IPI has shifted or added production capacity in select shops to help the State of Iowa address the shortage of personal protective equipment (PPE) during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
As the Department of Correction's Director Beth Skinner informed the public during Governor Kim Reynold's daily press conference on April 20, 2020, incarcerated men and women in the IPI program have made more than 62,000 masks, 6,300 face shields, 7,600 gowns, and more than 16,000 gallons of hand sanitizer to date. IPI's Fort Dodge Textiles shop has also produced gown sewing kits that were distributed through Iowa Central Community College to bolster supply. IPI plans to continue production as long as the needs the PPE and supplies are available.
"IPI staff and associates have really gone above and beyond to
assist Iowa's citizens during the health emergency. Many of us have
friends, family and loved ones that are at risk from the virus, or in a
long term care facility, or working on the front lines as health service
providers. Knowing that we are able to make a difference by providing
PPE is something that everyone at IPI is very proud of," commented Dan Clark, Director of Iowa Prison Industries.
IPI is distributing some of the PPE to Iowa's DOC and DHS Institutions. The rest is going to the State's stockpile to be distributed medical facilities across the State.
Facilities interested in receiving hand sanitizer, gowns, masks, or face shields, can make requests to their county Emergency Management office.