Iowa Lakes Community College joins effort in 3D printing gear for medical professionals

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ESTHERVILLE, Iowa (KCAU) – One Siouxland school is stepping up along with others to help out in making items to help health professionals.

The Engineering Technology program at Iowa Lakes Community College is partnering with a few businesses in the Great Lakes area to 3D print personal protective equipment and ear savers for healthcar facilities.

They originally started with two people, there are now 23 3D printers working around the clock making headbands, ear savers, and face sheilds.

“I started this project as a way to help out during this crazy time and partnered with Rick Ayers to make laminated face shields. Rick posted our project on Facebook, and we reached over 43,000 people in under 24 hours who had an interest in obtaining the face shields,” said Adam Perry, band director at Sioux Central Schools.

They said that the college delivered 58 face bands to Lakes Printing on Monday to help fill an order for Avera Holy Family Hospital in Estherville.

“We are using a fourth 3D printer to create ear savers. The ear savers are worn by healthcare professionals to help reduce the soreness that can occur when wearing face shields all day. We can print about four ear savers in about 90 minutes so that we can print 32 ear savers in 24 hour period.” Iowa Lakes Engineering Technology Program Coordinator Chad Tischer said.

Organizers posted their operations to Facebook and received more than 43,000 people interested in getting the face shields they are making. Once complete, the PPE is being distributed to healthcare professionals in northwest Iowa.

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