Locals band together to make medical masks

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LOVES PARK, Ill. (WIFR) -- Two medical professionals and an upholstery business owner teamed up to produce reusable masks, something that are in high demand.

"Our goal is by the end of the week to have a thousand masks and the reason for that is I could probably distribute those right now just in Rockford and still need more," Owner of In Home Medical Group Niccole Ranz said.

An assembly line style production has begun at Boots Upholstery, a local company that paired with Ranz. General Manager of the company Nick Gillam says he has been heavily involved since seeing the Facebook post.

"We came in yesterday morning and started putting together a template and 24 hours later here we are trying to make as many as we can," Gillam said.

In Home Medical Group has eight service lines, and more than 70 nurse practitioners and collaborating physicians who need personal protection equipment, or P.P.E.

"We knew there was going to be an issue with P.P.E. but it came to a head probably about a week ago where I had facilities contacting me desperate for help," Ranz said.

Ranz reached out to employee’s asking if they knew anyone with sewing skills. That message turned into a group of more than 40 people, doing what they can to help.

"When we go into a nursing home or an assisted living they are frightened, and to have some kind of barrier for them to say people out there know that you are there and they want to do everything they can do to help it just makes someone feel better," Ranz said.

In Home Medical Group and Boots Upholstery are urging anyone with sewing skills to get involved with the making of masks. You also can donate funds or materials to either company to help with production.