SAN DIEGO (KGTV) - In the wake of the coronavirus outbreak, a group of San Diegans is hoping to send some much-needed medical supplies to China - via outbound baggage.
Ying Yang is from Wuhan, in the Hubei province. "My two aunts, my two uncles and all my friends are in Wuhon," said Yang.
They're not sick, but Yang is worried. She has seen the news accounts of what is unfolding. "I am heartbroken," said Yang.
Also concerned is her friend Wei Qing. "I feel so bad. I want to help," said Qing.
Qing, who owns an online media company, posted a video on social media in China asking what he could do to help. Doctor on the frontlines told him there is a desperate shortage of medical supplies, especially protective gear.
"There are people suffering. Seeing doctors take their own risks by not wearing masks. You feel so frustrated," said Qing.
Qing says medical workers are going without breaks, even wearing adult diapers during 15-hour shifts. He has heard some of them are working without masks or protective coveralls.
So Yang, Qing and some 20 other friends got the word out. Face shields, N95 masks, goggles, and the coveralls were among the supplies donated by clinics and ordered by the group. But challenges remained. Shipping it to a hospital in Wuhon could take weeks.
That was too slow. On social media, they found a UCSD exchange student with a Wednesday morning flight, eventually landing in Beijing. In the two boxes he checked in were more than a thousand medical supplies supplied by the group, which he will ship next-day delivery once he arrives in Beijing.
On Thursday, a different student has volunteered to check in more supplies on his flight. The medical supply shortage is being blamed in part on factories shut down for the Chinese New Year holiday.
Here is a list of supplies the group is seeking:
1) Protective face mask for medical use such as 3M N95 1860 or 9132 masks
2) Surgical masks as ASTM F2100-II, level 2 or level 3 masks
3) Protective coverall such as a 3M 4565
4) Fully sealed goggles and protective face shields
Anyone interested in donating is asked to call 858-956-5998 to arrange a drop-off.