TROY — Ohio’s Hospice of Miami County is looking to mobilize an army of crafters who can sew face mask covers to help with the shortage of personal protective equipment (PPE) healthcare workers are facing throughout Ohio and the nation as they treat patients with COVID-19.
“Many crafters are reaching out and offering to make face mask covers,” said Amy LeVan, director of volunteer services at Ohio’s Hospice. “While our healthcare professionals are using their PPE equipment thoughtfully, these homemade face mask covers may help us extend our supply of PPE if shortages continue to be a challenge.”
Ohio’s Hospice of Miami County is accepting face mask covers from smoke-free and pet-free environments.
These face mask covers will be used as a last resort based on current guidance. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), healthcare providers can use homemade face masks when face masks are not available.
However, the CDC states that homemade face masks are not considered PPE, since their capability to protect healthcare providers is unknown. The homemade face masks should be used in combination with a face shield that covers the entire front, extending to the chin or below, and the sides of the face. The most current information about cloth masks from the CDC can be found at www.cdc.gov.
Instructions for how to craft homemade face mask covers, inspired by Common Thread, are as follows:
• Top fabric (use only washable cotton poly blend of water-resistant fabric, as they will be washed frequently.
• Cotton liner (do not use flannel or fleece)
• 1/8” or 1/4” elastic in two 10” lengths
• Seam allowance of 1/4” (do not deviate)
• Rubber-coated wire (RCW) (cut one, length of 1 3/4”)
1. Print the pattern and confirm the measurements match the printout.
2. Cut 2 each of the top fabric and liner fabric (4 total — two of each).
3. Right sides together, stitch the top fabric along the nose seam (1/4” allowance).
4. Repeat No, 3 for the liner fabric.
5. Place the liner into the top fabric, right sides together. Align the 2 nose seams and pin.
6. Stitch along the top edge to join the liner to the top fabric.
7. To create the nosepiece pocket, place the RCW piece between the top fabric and the liner, as it will be worn, centered side to side at the top of the nose seam. With the sewing machine foot against the bottom of the RCW, stitch along the entire length of RCW. Stitch along both ends to secure RCW into pocket.
8. Stitch the bottom (straight edge) to join the liner to the top fabric.
9. Turn inside out, press flast (with your hands or with a low iron).
10. Topstitch the top edge (1/4”).
11. Serge or sigzag the 2 “ear edges.”
12. Topstitch the bottom edge (do this last to keep the serged edge from fraying).
13. Attach the elastic band to the 2 side corners on each side.
If crafters have any questions, they may contact Beth Shrake, volunteer coordinator at Ohio’s Hospice of Miami County, at (937) 335-5191.
Crafters may drop off their completed face mask covers in a bin at the main entrance of Ohio’s Hospice of Miami County, at 550 Summit Ave Suite 101, Troy, OH 45373.