WOBURN — Mayor Scott Galvin is pleased to share that the Woburn Public Library is making personal protective equipment (PPE) using 3D printers to protect area medical professionals and first responders from the novel coronavirus (COVID-19).
The Woburn Public Library closed to the public on March 16 in order to prevent the spread of the virus, and began 3D printing face coverings for area first responders and medical professionals the next day, March 17.
The Woburn Public Library has four 3D printers, and has also formed a coalition with the Framingham and Medway Public libraries as well, bringing together a total of 9 3D printers. Library staff have made approximately 100 face masks using the 3D printers, and have transitioned to make face shields and face bands as guidelines have evolved regarding which face coverings are most effective.
The library has made 45 face shields as of Thursday, April 9, and recently began making face bands. So far, the library has donated to Lowell General Hospital and Milford Regional Medical Center, as well as to area first responders, with plans to continue producing and donating face shields and bands as long as the supplies are needed.
“Libraries have always been in a unique position to help,” said Assistant Director of Innovation and Technology John Walsh. “There been a lot of discussion about how we can help; there’s a lack of personal protective equipment. And, you know, with great power comes great responsibility and the Woburn Public Library has amazing tools and resources and an incredibly supportive director, trustees and mayor. Everyone backed it, so we got started.”
Each mask took seven hours to print, face shields take 4 and a half hours and each face band takes approximately 40 minutes.
“I think it’s a really uplifting story for the city, showing that there is a silver lining to this and we have a really strong community,” Mayor Scott Galvin said. “When we stick together, that’s when good things happen.”
Since she joined the library as its director, Bonnie Roalsen has used the hashtag #teamhuman to promote the library’s mission to meet the needs of everyone in the community, a sentiment that has become all the more powerful amid the current COVID-19 public health crisis.
“We’re all in this together,” Roalsen said. “It’s the philosophy that we’re going to meet people where they are and help them as they need to be helped. It seems particularly poignant in a pandemic, but it’s always been our philosophy.”
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- News clip: “Woburn Public Library Makes Masks with 3D Printers to Help Others,” click here.
- Woburn Public Library SOT: click here.
- Woburn Public Library VO: click here.
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