TAC HEBP and TAC RMP ship PPE to members

Pools track down gloves, hand sanitizer, disinfectant wipes and masks

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The TAC Health and Employee Benefits Pool and the TAC Risk Management Pool shipped hundreds of gallons of hand sanitizer and hundreds of thousands of gloves, masks and disinfectant wipes to member counties during April and May to help them respond safely to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Counties and other entities have had a hard time finding personal protective equipment (PPE) since Texas identified its first COVID-19 case in early March. Staff members in TAC's Health and Benefits Services and Risk Management Services departments tapped their own supplies and contacted vendors to pull together resources to share with TAC HEBP and TAC RMP members.

Rob Ressmann, Health and Employee Benefits Department Operations Manager, packs hand sanitizer to be shipped to members of the TAC Health and Employee Benefits Pool. Photo: Rob Ressmann   Shirley Ford, Health and Employee Benefits Department Administrative Assistant, preps packages of masks for members of the TAC Health and Employee Benefits Pool. Photo: Quincy Quinlan

In emails announcing the shipments, Health and Benefits Services Director Quincy Quinlan and Risk Management Services Director Michael Shannon urged Pool members to distribute the equipment among county first responders and staffs as needed.

The shipments to TAC HEBP members included 488 packages containing 110,000 masks and 484 gallons of hand sanitizer, which were mailed to 167 counties by request. In addition, 30 members received boxes of  sanitizing wipes and pocket-size bottles of hand sanitizer.

“We are glad to help the officials and employees of our members operate in as safe a manner as possible as they continue to provide services and assist their local communities during this unprecedented time," Quinlan said.

Tito's Handmade Vodka donated hand sanitizer that was included in personal protective equipment sent to TAC Risk Management Pool members. Photo: Jennifer Kolbasinski   Law Enforcement Consultant Terry Pickering and Risk Control consultants Joe Szewczyk and Jack Coffey pack boxes of masks for TAC RMP members in the Workers’ Compensation Program. Photo: Jennifer Kolbasinski

The first TAC RMP shipment sent 70,000 gloves and 30,000 masks to 202 members in its Workers' Compensation Program. TAC RMP also shipped more than 5,280 bottles of 12-ounce hand sanitizer, donated by Tito's Handmade Vodka of Austin, to every county Pool member, totaling 220 boxes. Tito's donates to first responders.

"We were able to get protective equipment, ordered before the shortage, which shows that we are always proactively looking at the exposures and risks for our members," Shannon said. "We immediately called our members and asked what they needed. A huge thank-you to Tito's Handmade Vodka. What they did for our members was the epitome of how Texans rise up and help one another. Throughout this pandemic, the message to our members has been: 'Stay safe. Texas needs you.' And everyone at TAC has rallied behind that call for our members."