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Dignity Health in Arizona designs reusable gowns to fight coronavirus

(Dignity Health Screenshot)

PHOENIX — An Arizona health care provider has designed reusable fabric isolation gowns for professionals to use during the coronavirus outbreak.

Dr. Ronald Gagliano, a Dignity Health surgeon, designed the gowns, which are made of a highly durable fabric that provides more protections to health care workers than disposable ones.

Gagliano hopes to create about 20,000 gowns for Dignity Health workers in Arizona as the nation faces a shortage of personal protective equipment.

“From our perspective, this would be a safer gown than what is currently in use and able to be reused,” Gagliano told KTAR News 92.3 FM on Monday.

The FDA-approved, one-size-fits-all gowns are designed to withstand more than 100 washes, Gagliano said.

The fabric for the gowns — about 44,000 yards of material in total — was flown from North Carolina to Arizona by the Arizona National Guard last week, according to a press release.

Production will start this week at F.A.B.R.I.C., a local Tempe non-profit organization, according to the release.

“We are proud to partner with these organizations to help Arizona meet this health care crisis,” Sherri Barry, co-founder of F.A.B.R.I.C., which stands for Fashion and Business Resource Innovation Center, said in the release. “Innovation is in our name, and it is driving us to produce equipment for health care workers on the front line.”

KTAR News 92.3 FM’s Ali Vetnar contributed to this report.

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