TOPEKA, Kan. (KSNT) — It has been nearly seven months since the coronavirus hit Kansas, and case numbers continue to grow. In order to keep the state open and running, thousands of pieces of personal protective equipment are sent out each week from the state’s PPE warehouse.

The Topeka warehouse holds almost all of the state’s PPE supply. Upwards of 100 shipments can leave the warehouse each day; that includes face shields, masks, respirators, gowns, hand sanitizer and disinfectant. The shipment then makes its way to counties across the state.

“We’re supporting county emergency management across the state,” explained Bryan Murdie, Planning Mitigation Branch Director, Kansas Division of Emergency Management. “Any requests that they have for first responders, public health departments, hospitals, etcetera.”

The warehouse is staffed with Kansas National Guardsmen who help organize, package and ship the supplies.

But now it’s not just Kansas counties that can benefit, Kansas businesses can also access the state’s PPE stockpile. Businesses that are waiting on PPE due to back orders or delayed delivery, can request supplies from the state.

“The Governor’s priorities within the state are to prevent the spread of COVID-19 and also ensure that we support economic recovery. So, it’s important for us to get PPE to small businesses so that they can operate safely,” said Murdie.

If approved, the PPE is delivered within a few days at no cost to the business.

Governor Kelly said the business PPE program will help the economic recovery of Kansas.

“I want to thank KDEM officials for helping our small business owners protect their employees and customers and make sure that they can stay open for business.”

To apply, businesses must:

  • Be owned and/or operated in Kansas
  • Be in good standing with the Kansas Department of Revenue
  • Have proof that the ordered PPE is on back-order or delayed delivery
  • Have 500 or fewer employees

There is no deadline to apply, officials say the program will run through the end of the year.

To apply, click here.