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Forgot your mask? Buy one from a vending machine

par John R. Fischer, Senior Reporter | June 16, 2020
Business Affairs Risk Management
CLEANLIFE and D & S Vending are creating PPE kits that can be dispensed from vending machines.
PPE and medical safety product distributor CLEANLIFE has found a creative way to dispense available PPE to the public in the form of vending machines, with the help of D&S Vending, a supplier of equipment, parts and services for the vending industry.

The two are offering six different PPE kits for vending operators to purchase and sell through their snack machines, with D&S Vending making such kits available through its website to its customer base of more than 5,000 vending operators in all 50 states.

"Several of our key customers are vending machine equipment manufacturers, distributors of replacement components for vending equipment, so it was a natural fit for us to develop and distribute PPE solutions that would make it easier for everyone to access PPE at an affordable price to promote a healthier and safer environment," Jonathan Koslo, general manager for CLEANLIFE, told HCB News. "As the economy starts to open up again, more people will be traveling and every state has different regulations for where masks need to be worn, for example. Vending machines allow us to distribute PPE across the United States."

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The kits are designed to work with existing coils inside the vending machines and consist of hand sanitizer, FDA approved 3-ply surgical masks, KN-95 FDA-approved masks, and anti-microbial hand wipes. Manufacturing of the kits will be completed in Cleveland, the headquarters for CLEANLIFE, which used its overseas contacts early on during the COVID-19 crisis to bring in PPE for the healthcare industry.

The strain of the pandemic on the global supply of PPE has left healthcare providers (and non-healthcare organizations) brainstorming different ways to bring in more supplies for physicians and patients to help contain and prevent the spread of the virus. Novant Health in North Carolina, for instance, recently teamed up with Zipline, an on-demand logistics service to deliver PPE and other medical supplies via drones to its frontline workers across multiple locations.

The creation of PPE kits designed for vending machines has led to the creation of jobs, according to Koslo. The company has also created solutions for employers and consumers that provide all necessary PPE to travel, go out and visit a restaurant and return to work while remaining safe and healthy.

"CLEANLIFE currently does not have plans to sell through machines in nursing homes or hospitals — we would hope both the hospitals and nursing homes would provide the necessary PPE to their employees, patients and guests," said Koslo. "For CLEANLIFE, we are selling PPE to nursing homes and medical facilities that were not able to procure the necessary PPE to continue to operate their facilities in a healthy and safe manner."

Kits are already located in machines in airports in Las Vegas and Los Angeles.

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