Transcript for Volunteers stitch masks together for health care workers
Now our "Gma" cover story. We heard about the shortage of masks crucial to help protect health care workers on the front lines of this pandemic. A group has come up with a possible solution using their sewing machines. Matt Gutman is in Glendale, California with the story. Good morning, Matt. Reporter: Good morning, some of these masks are in such short supply that some doctors are being asked to keep these masks for a week. So those folks you mentioned with the sewing machines and a small army of volunteer tailors in one Georgia community, they decided to design a pretty genius work around. The siege by the outbreak the past week, this staff at Georgia's coronavirus drive through and emergency room were shorting from protective gear at a record rate. We're working 16-hour days and we've gone through now six months of personal protective equipment in just seven days. Reporter: Scott steiner is the CEO of health, and his concern, those masks that help protect doctors and nurses from contracting infectious diseases. How many n95 masks do you have left on hand, and how fast are you going through them? We've got about 3 1/2 days left on hand. We're constantly looking for more supplies. Reporter: Which are almost impossible to find. We're going to go into the open market, to China, to India, to Mexico, to other places to find personal protective equipment for our staff because without it, nobody will be caring for the patients. Reporter: His staff using and discarding more than 3,000 a day. So burning the midnight oil Saturday at the hospital's command center, they came up with an idea. We've decided instead of using it one time and throwing it away, we believe our staff can use it even for an entire day if we can cover it. This is a hand made mask that we will put over these N95s that we will be able to take off after every use and then we will be able to launder these and use them again so we can conserve these. Reporter: That was a prototype, but to mass produce the masks, they would need more than needle, thread and surgical sheeting. They would need a brigade of tailors. Folks like Belinda Wright heeded the call, stitching a double exterior mask with elastic bands that can be used after washing. I have a couple of machines here in my craft room, but it's something I enjoy doing and it's something I felt like I could do for the community. We've got an army of seamstresses making these for us in the community, volunteers, people from out of town. We have more than 50 people making these right now. We think we can make 200,000 of them. Reporter: Today they expect to have over 50 people sewing these masks. We have an incredible you know, I think Americans in general are good people. We band together when the going gets tough, and that's a great example of that. And by the end of today, they hope to produce a couple of thousand of those mask covers a day, up to 200,000 in the very near future, George. That is great. Thank you, Matt.
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