Petoskey, MI: On Saturday, March 21, Petoskey Plastics began manufacturing non-surgical isolation gowns to support healthcare workers and patients during the COVID-19 crisis. Initial capacity for this new product is 10,000 gowns per day with plans to increase production at their blown film manufacturing plant in Petoskey, Mich.
Jason Keiswetter, President of Petoskey Plastics, said, “In less than five days, we’ve gone through conceptual designs, samples, re-tooling of equipment, and now we are ramping up for production to support our medical friends in need. We are also working hard to collaborate globally with companies we know already have similar equipment in place.”
Petoskey Plastics worked closely with infection prevention experts at McLaren Health Care to develop the prototype. McLaren Northern Michigan Chief Executive Office, Todd Burch, said, “This urgent, proactive action by Petoskey Plastics will help maintain the safety of thousands of patients and staff across the state of Michigan. Petoskey Plastics is setting an example for what Michigan manufacturers can do to support health care institutions during this crisis.”
Keiswetter stated about the partnership, “We are very appreciative of Todd and the McLaren team for proactively reaching out to us and discussing potential solutions. Once we identified the apron as a potential fit, we immediately came together as a company. I’m very proud of our engineers, plant associates, and sales team for quickly identifying a workable solution.”
Petoskey Plastics is experienced with manufacturing products for the medical industry. They make blood and viral barrier protective film (ASTM F1671), Autoclave and Biohazard bags for large national accounts and distributors. Using similar materials and technology, gowns will be made on converted Automotive OEM lines typically dedicated to protective automotive seat covers.
This non-surgical isolation gown is made with 3-ply medical barrier blue film and is a one-size-fits-all apron design. Isolation gowns are essential to the medical field, especially during the COVID-19 crisis, because they help protect healthcare workers and patients from the spread of illness and transfer of potentially harmful microorganisms.
Senior Research & Development Engineer Michael Tramontini said, “I’m grateful we are in a position to help with the safety of patients and healthcare workers during this time. It really shows that we are dedicated to our mission of earning the appreciation and respect of our customers, associates, and communities.”
Due to the heavy volume of support and urgent needs, and in order to adhere to company standards, the company is asking inquiries for non-surgical isolation gowns to visit petoskeyplastics.com/isolation-gowns/. Keiswetter said, “Our goal here is to make sure gowns get to the right people without wasting valuable time.”
With regard to COVID-19, Petoskey Plastics has activated and engaged their Business Continuity Plan for Infectious Diseases. Petoskey Plastics continues to follow all guidelines from the CDC and local health officials to help keep their associates, business communities, and customers safe. Because they supply goods and various surface protection products into the medical, consumer, and transportation markets, they have a social responsibility of maintaining a normal working schedule during this crisis. Most administrative and sales associates are working remotely. Unless notified otherwise, they intend to continue operations. Keiswetter said, “We have an obligation to protect the health and wellbeing of our associates and their families.”
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About Petoskey Plastics
Petoskey Plastics is an environmentally focused recycler and plastic film, bag and resin manufacturer. Headquartered in Petoskey, Michigan, the company provides products and engineered solutions for a variety of industries including automotive, industrial, institutional, medical, retail, construction and home improvement. Petoskey Plastics has facilities in Michigan, Indiana and Tennessee. Learn more at petoskeyplastics.com.
About McLaren Northern Michigan
McLaren Northern Michigan, a subsidiary of McLaren Health Care, is a 202-bed, regional referral center located in Petoskey, serving residents in 22 counties across northern lower Michigan and the eastern part of the Upper Peninsula. Over 230 physicians representing nearly all medical and surgical specialties, enabling full-service care with an emphasis on heart, cancer, orthopedics, and neuroscience services. For additional information, visit mclaren.org/northern.