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#MyMaskMyStory: “We have to really be careful with ourselves and each other”

National Headquarters  |  July 7, 2020

Part of our Together While Apart campaign, #MyMaskMyStory is a collection of personal accounts from individuals with deep ties to the COVID-19 pandemic. These include those who have volunteered, those who have donated, and those who have received.

Edited by Dilber Shatursun

“I’m the ultrasound tech here at Montclair Hospital. I take care of all the scannings in our department and also at the ICU on the floor. This pandemic has really changed things… we have to really be careful with ourselves and each other to protect our families. My colleagues and I really suit up in proper PPE to make sure that everybody’s safe.”

“Before we received our stuff from Tzu Chi, we’ve always been kind of short on PPE- especially N95 masks… We have to definitely have the protective gear on because we’re so close to the patient and, actually, sometimes we’re even leaning on top of the patient that we need these supplies so badly. We’re always trying to get any PPE, because we do reuse- reclean our gowns- we try to sterilize them, too, but having more gowns means that we won’t have to do that.”

“[Seeing the masks from Tzu Chi] I thought ‘oh!,’ I was very surprised, very shocked, and very grateful. We’re very grateful that our boss told us that you were going to come and give us supplies that we so desperately need. We are very grateful for them to bring this to us and to think about us enough to give us these supplies. Everybody is so… grateful, again, for you. These supplies will help us protect everybody and we thank you and thank them so so much.”

“Nobody in our department has been positive [for the coronavirus] so far- knock on wood. And thank God, but I think even with us trying to take precaution with ourselves, this will help for us to continue not to test positive.”

Donations of PPE from Tzu Chi, like those made to Tonya Zavala’s workplace, are crucial to helping healthcare workers stay as protected as possible as they keep us healthy and coronavirus-free. To see the entire #MyMaskMyStory collection, click here.

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