STORIES
March 26, 2020

Crocs Are Donating 1 Free Pair of Shoes To Healthcare Workers - Here's How To Get Yours

Plastic breathable shoe on wet ground
Chaunie Brusie By: Chaunie Brusie

“This is uncharted territory,” one nurse said.

While Kaleigh McDonald, an ICU nurse at Morristown Medical Center in New Jersey, is home on maternity leave, she has still found a way to join her coworkers in the fight against the coronavirus. 

The nurse, after hearing stories of increasing cases of COVID-19 at their hospital, decided to organize a supply drive as a way to help. But along with masks, gloves, and a sanitizer, McDonald had a rather unusual request to support her fellow nurses--she asked for Crocs. 

Crocs Against Coronavirus

Why Crocs? Well, as a nurse who has worked in ICU, McDonald is acutely aware of the lengths that healthcare professionals are being forced to go through to try to prevent bringing the virus home with them. On a regular basis, nurses take precautions with things such as only wearing designated hospital jackets, changing their shoes outside or leaving them at the hospital, and sanitizing any items that they use at the hospital, such as keys and bags. 

Knowing first hand how seemingly “small” things--like your shoes--can be an unknowing source of transmission, McDonald has used her lens as a nurse to realize that Crocs donations could help nurses on the front lines have a little bit of an easier time protecting their own families and easing their burden at work. 

“I thought of shoes and how dangerous it is for them to be going in and out of these isolation rooms, and what they’re bringing home to their families,” she told her local news station. “Crocs such an easy shoe to put on and off. can be left in the warm zone right outside the rooms. can be bleached down.” 

Crocs are Giving Free Shoes To Healthcare Workers

Crocs clearly heard the call and answered it in a big way - they announced on Instagram that they are giving one free paid of Crocs shoes to each healthcare worker. Go here to claim your free pair of Crocs. 

#GiveMePPE

McDonad’s efforts are part of a larger effort on the part of nurses and doctors across the country who are literally begging for more protective equipment that will allow them to do their jobs more effectively. The hashtag #GiveMePPE is being used by medical professionals to share their own stories, encourage donations, and tell others how they can help. 

The dire shortage of PPE has led to drastic measures--many doctors and nurses are using one mask to treat patients all day, one physician literally rigged his own mask to last longer with a toilet hood, and a Detroit hospital has started running their IV tubing out in the hallway for their patients to reduce having to gown up just to adjust IV pump settings. 

Reusing masks, while unfortunately, the only option healthcare professionals have at the moment, is putting them at major risk--one study explains that masks become ineffective at filtering even bacteria, which are much larger than viruses, after only two hours. So imagine how useless these masks are after being used all day, and sometimes more? 

And unfortunately, as many have resorted to using and donating homemade cloth masks, a study out of the British Medical Journal found that cloth masks did not offer nearly as much protection as medical masks. So, it’s essential that we not only donate actual medical masks as they are available but push for nurses and doctors to have access to real masks-- government officials need to hear the message that real PPE is necessary and that homemade cloth masks are not enough. 

How You Can Help Nurses

If you’re a nurse at home, like McDonald, or just want to get involved in helping to support the nurses on the front lines, there are many crucially important ways you can help. 

Hospitals across the country are in desperate need of personal protective equipment, so if you have any that you purchased for yourself, or have for your own business, please consider donating them. Especially as more states are shutting down non-essential businesses, donating any business supplies you have on hand can literally save lives. 

Some examples include gloves if you are a restaurant owner, dental masks, woodworking or construction site masks, and masks and gloves from beauty salons and spas. You can donate any of the following: 

  • N95 masks 
  • Medical surgical masks
  • Eye protectors
  • Face shields
  • Sterile gowns
  • Surgical gloves

If you have PPE to donate, you can use FindTheMasks.com to locate a donation drop-off site near you. In addition, nearly every single hospital in affected areas has arranged for donation drop-offs, so check with your local hospital to see when and how they are accepting donations. 

As with McDonald’s drive, you can also consider if any donation of Crocs can be useful for your local hospital as an easy on-off, bleachable shoe. At this point, any action we can take--from donating a mask to a simple pair of shoes-- may just save a life. 

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