If you have extra unused supplies like masks, gloves, hand sanitizer, or cleaning wipes, now is a good time to donate them to your local hospital, public health department, or a healthcare worker you know. Time is running out for people who require protective medical gear the most.

According to reports, almost 9 million children under the age of 5 die each year due to lack of access to simple medical supplies. And that’s just children under 5! People around the world are dying because they don’t have access to the billions of dollars of usable medical supplies that go to landfills in the United States each year.

Donating supplies, often called donating in-kind, can be done on a small or large scale. Individuals who have surplus medical supplies or equipment that they don’t need can donate them for a good cause. Most times, individual donations come from family members of deceased loved ones. They might have a stock of supplies that remain unused, or medical devices that are no longer being used.

Your donation could mean the difference between life and death for those who suffer because of limited access to supplies and medicine. Aside from the obvious humanitarian benefits of donation, recent reports note that usable medical supplies totaling around $765 billion contributed to annual waste. That is more than the annual budget of the Defense Department!

It is also noted that the value of those wasted supplies could cover the full medical insurance premium for about 150 million United States workers. Aside from the fact that donation is good for the environment (because it reduces the amount of usable waste), it could incentivize lower healthcare costs for individuals and businesses.

If you decide that you want to donate medical supplies, you have several options to consider. You can donate to a local organization that is willing to take unused supplies. Many hospitals and home healthcare companies take supplies to give to patients who are unable to afford them on their own.

What are the Best Places to Donate Unused Medical Supplies?

  1. Global Links

Global Links is a medical aid organization that accepts donations from medical suppliers, health care workers, and individuals from the community. They accept unused medical supplies, surgical instruments, hospital equipment, walking and injury aids in good condition, and biomedical equipment. To donate, email [email protected]

  1. MedShare

This is a non-profit organization that collects and redistributes unused medical equipment to communities in need. They collect unused medical equipment and supplies, as well as used biomedical equipment. To donate, you are expected to fill out the appropriate form on their website which will ask for your contact information as well as a description of the donation.

  1. MedWish International

MedWish receives health-related products as donations including unused medical supplies and equipment. They do not accept expired supplies or pharmaceutical products as donations. Medical supplies and equipment that are accepted may include things like ace wraps to burn dressings to crutches. Equipment accepted can be cardiac monitors, exam tables, hoyer lifts, and walkers. Check the website for a complete of items being accepted. If you want to donate supplies, call 216-692-1685.

  1. Help The Children

Help The Children strives to provide medical services and supplies to impoverished people around the world. Note that they accept donations of medications such as acetaminophen, ibuprofen, and antibiotic ointment, as well as unopened packages of many common over-the-counter medications. To make a donation of medication or other supplies, call 323- 980-9870.

  1. Alliance for Smiles

Alliance for Smiles receives donations of surplus medical supplies and equipment and distributes them to people who need them the most. Note that they have an online medical supply needs list since their needs are constantly changing.

Supplies can be surgical, dental, pediatric, as well as bio-medical in nature. All supplies that are donated are expected to be within the expiration date and unused. To donate supplies, call 415-647-4481 or email [email protected]

  1. American Medical Resource Foundation

The American Medical Resource Foundation is known to distribute donated medical equipment and supplies to charitable hospitals and medical clinics. They receive used items that are either functioning or able to be repaired. The Foundation can arrange for the pick up of your items if needed. To make a donation email [email protected]!

  1. Project C.U.R.E.

Project C.U.R.E. is a humanitarian relief organization that receives medical supplies and equipment and donates it to developing countries. A C.U.R.E. Kit is a specially prepared box, containing an assortment of medical supplies, medications, and instruments, designed to be hand-carried by a short-term medical team for international use. The aim is to provide the most common medical and surgical items needed by a short-term medical team

  1. Get Us PPE

This is a grassroots organization established by medical professionals that connects potential donors with hospitals and healthcare organizations around the country, with instructions on drop-off procedures.

  1. Local Organizations That Accept Donations

There are various local organizations in the United States you can check in with if you prefer to donate medical supplies during a national disaster, epidemic, or pandemic. However, note that during an epidemic or pandemic, donations may be put on hold in order to prevent contamination.

You can check in with your local department of public health to see if they are currently accepting medical supplies. If not, you may be able to donate other supplies or foods that help out individuals or animals in need that are being negatively impacted. You can also check in with:

  • Local clinics in your area
  • Contact your local news station to see if they know of a business in need
  • Places of worship
  • Homeless shelters and safe houses
  • Your local fire and police department
  • Local restaurants and grocery stores that are open during a pandemic or epidemic

Most organizations are always accepting donations because they are always shipping out supplies. A good number of these programs have monthly and annual goals they are trying to reach. So don’t wait to contact them if you think you have supplies or equipment that they could use. If you have concerns about the timing of your donation contact the organization you’ve chosen to donate to and ask for scheduling details.

Frequently Asked Question

  1. Where Can You Donate Unused Medical Supplies?

There are various options to consider when looking for where to donate unused medical supplies. You can choose to donate to a local organization that is willing to accept unused supplies. There are also hospitals and home healthcare companies that accept supplies to give to patients who are unable to afford them on their own.

  1. What Can You Do With Your Unused Medical Supplies?

First and foremost, no medical supply organisation will accept returns of any items irrespective of the condition (opened, unopened, new, or used) after the 30 calendar days to return an item from the date you received it. Therefore, you have to find an organization near you and partner with them.

  1. Where Can You Donate Unused Medical Supplies In UK?
  • Inter Care
  • Christian Medical Fellowship
  • Student MedAid
  • Jacobs Well Appeal
  • Hospice of Hope (UK)
4. Does The Red Cross Take Unused Medical Supplies?

Yes, Red Cross accepts donations and unused medical supplies. However, when donating items that will benefit the Red Cross, it is necessary to adhere to the rules and regulations in order to maintain an efficient donation process.

  1. Who Can Donate Medical Supplies?

According to reports, donations come from these three groups:

  • Individuals
  • Hospitals
  • Medical Suppliers
 6. How Do You Donate Medical Supplies?

To find out where you can donate unused medical supplies near you, take time to search the Internet for local PPE donation drives. Also, note that you can contact your local hospital’s supply manager or public health department. They more or less offer lists of the specific items they require and will tell you whether they accept small volume drop-offs or prefer bulk donations. Many non-profit organizations accept monetary donations as well.

  1. What Medical Supplies Can You Donate?

Although every organization will have specific lists of the supplies they accept, here are three primary categories of donatable medical supplies:

  • Disposable Supplies: bandages, alcohol pads, gloves, diapers, catheters, soap, sutures, etc.
  • Medical Equipment: wheelchairs, crutches, machines, or biomedical equipment
  • Pharmaceuticals: prescription medications or supplements
  1. What Can You Do With Out Of Date Medical Supplies?

There are quite a few routes that you can take when choosing what to do with your expired medical supplies. You can choose to donate them, return them to the vendor for credit, or even sell close-dated items.

  1. How Do You Dispose Of Unused Catheters?

Catheters and other similar supplies are quite deadly for the environment if they end up in landfills. And owing to this, the ideal and safest option is to have them destroyed by a professional shredding and destruction company.

  1. Where Can You Donate Unused Incontinence Pads UK?
  • A local food bank
  • The Hygiene Bank
  • A senior citizen’s centre.
  • Chernobyl Aid UK
  • Homeless shelters
  • Shelter for women escaping domestic violence.
  • Your local township office.
  1. What To Do With Old Clothes That Cannot Be Donated?

There are various options and things to do with clothes that aren’t in ideal condition for donation. These options include;

  • Textile recycling
  • Hand-me-downs
  • Art projects
  • Rags
  • Give to an animal shelter
  • Compost cotton
  • Bring to a store for a discount
  • Make a memorial quilt or stuffed animal
  • Make a dress-up box
  • Send back to the manufacturer
  • Repair them
  • Turn T-shirts into bags
  • Use fabrics as patches
  • Make a pocket scarf or handkerchief
  1. Where Can You Donate CPAP Supplies?

When you intend to donate, it is imperative to be careful about the organization you pick. Note that some charitable organizations will not do anything with your CPAP, rather they will destroy it. Take your time to search for organizations that specifically deal with sleep disorders, breathing conditions, and lung conditions.

Organizations to consider include;

  • The Durable Medical Equipment Aid Society
  • Advocates for World Health
  • The Kibogora Initiative via Second Wind CPAP
  • The Reggie White Foundation
  • American Sleep Apnea Association
  • Breathe California of the Bay Area
  1. Can CPAP Machines Be Donated?

Yes, there are a lot of places that will accept used CPAP machines, such as the American Sleep Association, and the donation is even eligible for a tax letter for your records. However, ensure to include the value of your machine and cost of shipping for tax purposes

  1. What Do You Do With Crutches You No Longer Need?

So many organizations accept crutch donations. Donating your crutches will make you feel good, help someone else in need, and even let you claim your donation as a tax deduction.

  1. How Do You Dispose Of Pillows And Duvets?

Have it in mind that duvets and pillows are not recyclable; however, there are some animal charities that can use them for bedding. Otherwise, they should be put in the general waste.

  1. Can You Buy A Used CPAP Machine?

Yes, it is possible to obtain a used CPAP machine, but have it in mind that a used machine cannot be as good as buying a new model. However, you can check sites like EBay and Craigslist or even visit a local garage sale and find used CPAP equipment for several hundred dollars less than the retail price.

  1. What Do You Do With Used Medical Boots?

Boots are indeed less durable than most other medical supplies and tend to come in much closer contact with the skin — making them more troublesome to donate. Although a good number of nonprofits will not accept used boots and braces for these reasons, you can still find a way to keep them from going to landfills or wasting.

Nonetheless, in the United States, two national organizations will accept orthopaedic supplies, including boots, braces and slings: Samaritan’s Purse and MedShare. Note that you can ship materials, but you will be expected to fill out a donation form first to confirm acceptance. Also note that you can give out your used boots to a neighbourhood church, senior centre, community centre or shelter, or stop by your local Goodwill or Salvation Army chapter.

  1. Can You Donate Hanging File Folders?

Yes, you can donate and even recycle hanging file folders. Since hanging file folders are made of paper, all you have to do is remove any plastic or metal from the folder, separate the paper from those materials, and toss the paper folder in your recycling bin.

  1. What Is The Shelf Life Of Sterilized Packs?

Ideally, packs sterilized and stored appropriately have a shelf life of six months from the date of sterilization.

  1. How Long Do Surgical Packs Remain Sterile?

Heat-sealed, plastic peel-down pouches and wrapped packs sealed in 3-mil (3/1000 inch) polyethylene overwrap, according to experts, can stay sterile for as long as 9 months.

  1. Do Charity Shops Take Bed Sheets?

Yes, if the bed sheets are in good enough condition you could donate them to a charity shop. However, there are numerous factors to consider if you’re planning on donating them to a charity shop. First and foremost, ensure they’re in good condition, no rips, tears, stains that won’t shift and so on.

  1. What Do You Do With Old Medical Equipment in UK?
  • Sell your item
  • Offer your item for free
  • Donate to local charities
  • Return your equipment
Joy Nwokoro