NORFOLK, Va. (WAVY) — A local university donated around $1,000 worth of personal protective equipment to help local health care workers fight coronavirus.

Norfolk State University’s Department of Nursing and Allied Health donated the PPE to the Norfolk Health Department on Tuesday.

The donation comes as health care workers and first responders around the United States grapple with a PPE shortage to protect workers from contracting COVID-19 as they treat patients who are sick with the disease.

“It feels good. I feels good because in nursing, it’s all about being a multidisciplinary team. So for me, it feels good to give back to my comrades,” said Dr. Julie Rogers,who has taught at the school for six years.

The PPE included shoe covers, sanitizing wipes, yellow isolation gowns, and face masks with shields. The nursing department uses these items to train students; however, they are teaching them virtually during the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Nursing is always changing. No minute is the same so we adapt to change and one thing we do is listen to directions,” Rogers said.

Dr. Mildred Fuller, who leads the Department of Nursing and Allied Health, said the PPE could’ve done anywhere in Virginia, but NSU wanted to give back to the local community.

“The health department is vital to us. When people don’t have insurance, you can turn to the health department. It is a ready resource in the community,” she said.

The Department of Nursing and Allied Health is hoping to continue to give back to the community be educating top-notch nurses, who are needed on the front lines during health emergencies.

The nursing department is also hoping to give back in another way: By continuing the education of nurses, who are needed on the front lines.

“We need nurses but we need professional nurses,” said NSU Nursing Recruiter Sandra J. Olanitori. “We’re not at our capacity for professional nurses in the United States. We are still at a low or shortage period.”

The Department of Nursing and Allied Health confirmed that some NSU students are currently working at local hospitals to help fight COVID-19. NSU is also ordering more PPE to donate.

“It always feels good to give back to the community because when you look back at your life, someone gave back to you. You always want to give back regardless of what status level you are. It’s not about money. It’s not about color. It’s not about race. It’s about being a human being,” Rogers said.

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