For healthcare professionals battling the COVID-19 pandemic, isolation gowns are among the most used and needed personal protective equipment (PPE). In response to this critical need, Dow (NYSE: DOW) collaborated with nine key partners across a myriad of industries to develop and donate 100,000 isolation gowns to help frontline workers in Texas, Louisiana and Mexico.
“The Dow team is proud to continue developing PPE to help our frontline workers, but this effort would not have been possible without our partner companies, each of whom readily stepped up to make this project a reality,” said Michelle Boven, global marketing director for Health & Hygiene at Dow. “It’s also a testament to how quickly companies can innovate when a diverse team from different organizations across industries come together to achieve a common objective.”
The end-product, Association for the Advancement of Medical Instrumentation (AAMI) Level 2 gowns, required concepting, design, testing, package development and a supply chain. In this case, each collaborator brought their unique expertise to the table, all donating valuable time and resources to the project.
The gown is made with polyethylene nonwoven coated with a layer of polyethylene film made with resin donated by Dow.
Fitesa manufactured the nonwoven material that provides tear resistance and soft touch.
Cadillac Products Packaging Company provided extrusion coating of the film making it durable enough for AAMI Level 2 performance.
3M and Shurtape donated the tape to provide barrier performance on the gown sewn seams.
Mobility technology company, Magna International, Inc., - identified through Dow’s relationship with Volkswagen – provided resources to cut and sew the gowns.
DuPont provided isolation gown design expertise.
Landaal Packaging Systems has donated all the boxes to ship the gowns.
Plastixx FFS Technologies donated the bags for each gown to be packaged in for distribution.
The 100,000 AAMI Level 2 gowns will be distributed equally to government agencies in Mexico and in the states of Louisiana and Texas.
“Our teams are problem solvers by nature and their passion around helping during these unprecedented times has been nothing short of inspiring,” said Frank Eupizi, director of engineering, Magna International. “It’s been an honor to witness the same passion at Dow and to collaborate with them to provide medical gowns for healthcare professionals using the skills and expertise normally applied to producing automotive seat covers. We are grateful for the opportunity to make a difference together.”
“Many companies have shown tremendous ingenuity and speed in changing over production to meet the needs for respirators, masks, face shields, hand sanitizer and other products critical to fighting this pandemic,” said Boven from Dow. “With the accelerated product development, testing and certification of these medical gowns, Dow is proud to be among these innovators and we will continue to look for ways to use our vast material science expertise to address the needs of frontline workers around the world.”
The gowns conform with ASTM and ANSI standards and are labeled in compliance with FDA guidance on non-surgical apparel.
These isolation gowns are the latest action Dow has undertaken to help address the COVID-19 global pandemic crisis:
On May 14, Dow, Whirlpool Corporation and Reynolds Consumer Products announced the development of a powered, air-purifying respirator, or PAPR, which takes the place of a traditional medical face mask and faces shield.
On April 17, Dow announced the open source design for a simplified face shield and the donation of 100,000 face shields to hospitals in Michigan.
On April 9, Dow announced an additional $500,000 donation to the Great Lakes Bay Region in Michigan to aid COVID-19 relief efforts in Dow’s global headquarters community.
On March 30, Dow announced that sites across North America, Europe and Latin America were set to produce more than 200 metric tons of hand sanitizer, equivalent to more than 880,000 eight-ounce bottles, to be donated to local health systems and government agencies.
On March 23, Dow committed $3 million to aid COVID-19 relief efforts, with donations going towards global relief organizations, as well as non-profits in communities where Dow operates.
Dow’s material science expertise and production capabilities are used to develop some of the most vital hygiene medical products and technologies to fight the COVID-19 pandemic, such as disinfectants, sanitizers, cleansers, plastics used in the production of disposable PPE for medical professionals, and memory foams for hospital beds.
Dow (NYSE: DOW) combines global breadth, asset integration and scale, focused innovation and leading business positions to achieve profitable growth. The Company’s ambition is to become the most innovative, customer centric, inclusive and sustainable materials science company. Dow’s portfolio of plastics, industrial intermediates, coatings and silicones businesses delivers a broad range of differentiated science-based products and solutions for its customers in high-growth market segments, such as packaging, infrastructure and consumer care. Dow operates 109 manufacturing sites in 31 countries and employs approximately 36,500 people. Dow delivered sales of approximately $43 billion in 2019. References to Dow or the Company mean Dow Inc. and its subsidiaries. For more information, please visit www.dow.com or follow @DowNewsroom on Twitter.