Gundersen Health System, La Crosse, 2020 Community Benefit

6,000 Face Shields from Scratch

Gundersen Health System staff formed an assembly line to make more than 1,100 face shields in two days.
In early March 2020, Gundersen Health System occupational therapist Nathan Jordan’s job was helping patients fit and adjust their wheelchairs.
He soon became one of dozens of team members redeployed to equip Gundersen frontline staff with gear to shield them from COVID-19.
“This wasn’t in my job description,” Nathan says. “This wasn’t on the radar.”
There weren’t enough face shields for the Gundersen Orthotics and Prosthetics staff members tending to patients in the Hospital.
“We saw a shield and said, ‘Well, we can make those,’” says John Barteck, lead orthotist.
The team reached out to vendors for the raw materials needed to assemble face shields. Staff mobilized and volunteered in an assembly-line to produce 1,156 face shields in just two days. More than 6,000 face shields were produced in total.
“This project is an example of the innovative nature and resilience of our team,” says Rachel Albrecht, Gundersen administrative director. “The way people were able to come together to get this ready to go quickly and efficiently is just a testament to the dedication and passion of our team to help in any way we can.”