As COVID-19 grinds our daily lives to a halt, most of us have gone from trying to find time in the day for all of our activities to trying to find activities to fill all the time in our day.
Kids and adults alike are experiencing an abnormal amount of free time, where work from home seems, at best, flexible.
In the Heringer household, things are a bit different.
Sarah Heringer, an emergency physician with Kaiser Permenante, is on the front lines of what the majority of our community only sees glimpses of on TV.
As the nation comes to terms with a new normal, Sarah and her colleagues are at the center of a medical system and its supply chain in crisis.
As the Coronavirus continues its deadly march across the country, news reports paint a grim picture of a massive shortage of critical needs doctors and nurses are facing to not only treat patients, but protect themselves.
After all, what good are hospitals if employees can't report to work to fight a virus they themselves have contracted.
Some life saving items, such as ventilators, are becoming increasingly harder to acquire.
Governors who are center stage in the pandemic, are scouring the planet trying to get their hands on whatever medical equipment they can to help their states navigate emergency room surges of COVID-19 patients. Frequently this has led to auction wars that drives up prices and pits every corner of our country against each other.
When asked about finding critical needs for his state, New York governor Andrew Cuomo said, "it's like being on Ebay with 50 other states, bidding on a ventilator".
While a sophisticated piece of equipment such as a ventilator is more difficult to come by, most assume items such as swabs and masks should be readily available, particularly in a country such as the US.
As we quickly found out, that is not the case.
Yesterday it was reported our national stockpile of medical equipment needed to help treat COVID-19 is nearly depleted, exacerbating a supply problem in a situation that is not remotely close to reaching its apex.
At the center of most discussions between doctors and nurses?
To fill our local void, the Heringer family sprang into action.
Led by Davis High Lacrosse stars Grace and Ella after calls from their mother, the family turned their living room into a mask making factory.
Armed with scissors, athletic tape, and a home lamination machine, the sisters are making 50 to 100 masks during each round of production.
Grace, a junior who starts at defensive midfield for DHS told the Davis Enterprise, "Everyday, (Mom) was coming home and telling us stories about how they were running out of masks and how doctors are starting to get worried since it’s a health hazard for them, too.”
Heeding the call for supplies, the sisters medical start-up was born.
The official name, Team Shield, is financially driven by donations from the local community. To date, they have raised nearly $7,000 for a goal originally set at $5,000.
Their official webpage even shows you how to make masks of your own.
The girls say doctors and nurses are using Team Shield masks as fast as they can be produced.
"People are helping out by ordering us items or making masks themselves, and we're able to bring it all back to our house and our mom can drop things off when she goes to work," Grace told the Davis Enterprise.
Currently the girls are shipping masks to Kaiser and other local area hospitals in need.
You can donate and check out videos of their operation at their website.
The community thanks the ingenuity of the Heringer Family and wishes Sarah alongside all first responders a safe time period during their fight against COVID-19.
(Steve and Sarah Heringer)