Nurse calling on businesses to donate masks to St. Paul's Hospital

A nurse in Saskatoon is worried that, as the coronavirus takes hold here, front-line health-care workers do not have enough basic protective gear. 

As of Monday morning, there are 52 cases of COVID-19, the illness caused by the coronavirus, in Saskatchewan. 

Nurse Kia Frey is calling on businesses and individuals to donate what they can to St. Paul's Hospital in Saskatoon. Frey is a licensed practical nurse. She's spent the past 10 years working at St. Paul's Hospital and is on leave right now. 

"I was talking to some of my colleagues and they had concerns over the lack of masks that they had available to use," Frey said. "There just weren't enough." 

Frey said staff were asking for more, but there weren't many in stores, which made it tough to get what they needed. 

Right now, the health-care workers, front-line people — they all need a little bit extra help. - Kia Frey

Last week, Frey spoke to her hairdresser, who was closing up her shop, and asked her to donate the masks they use to protect themselves from toxic chemicals. The hairdresser and owner both agreed. Frey picked them up and dropped them off at St. Paul's. 

"They were sort of the generic surgical masks. I'm not sure how much that would work for a front-line worker — but it's something and better than nothing, which is bad." 

Frey said if people have any extra, please donate them. 

"Right now, the health-care workers, front line people — they all need a little bit extra help," she said. "If you could even just spare whatever you can." 

Some businesses have already been doing what they can.

Managers and staff at Sunsera Salon in Stonebridge sent what they had.

Jazna Mack at Liquid Vanity Esthetics posted on Facebook that she had also donated masks and gloves to St. Paul's Hospital, and Sherwood Chevrolet posted that they had donated painters masks from their body shop to hospital staff.

Krista Kut said Half Kut Beauty has donated all their disposable masks and gloves. 

Frey said people should remember to stay home, wash their hands and help everyone by keeping isolated.