PINEVILLE, La. – March 26, 2020 – Today, Cleco donated $1,500 to Louisiana College (LC) to support the college’s efforts to make face shields for health care facilities that are facing supply shortages amid the coronavirus outbreak.
Natalie Maxey, Ph.D., assistant professor of engineering at LC, is helping to organize the community project. Dr. Maxey said the idea came from hearing how the health care industry was facing a shortage of supplies and personal protective equipment due to the coronavirus.
“We have a 3D printer and normally use it for our pre-engineering program, but it can print the materials needed to make face shields and masks,” said Dr. Maxey. “We’re focusing on face shields first because this is what the local hospitals have told us they need, and they meet hospital requirements. A mask design also is in progress in case there is a shortage of those.”
Dr. Maxey said her sister, a surgeon at Rapides Regional Medical Center, along with another doctor, have been helping with testing.
She also said it takes about one hour and 15 minutes to make one face shield, but she has volunteers with 3D printers willing to help. Cleco’s donation will help make about 300 face shields.
“We’re committed to helping protect the communities we serve which includes the medical professionals working in our hospitals, urgent care facilities and nursing homes,” said Anthony Bunting, chief transformation officer. “Cleco believes in the power of community and now more than ever, we need to help one another especially those on the front lines.”
“Part of our mission at LC is to use the resources we’ve been blessed with to find solutions to disease, poverty, and war and to improve quality of life,” said Dr. Maxey.