Using a sort of shopping list, three volunteers spent several days this week digging through nearly a dozen pallets of expired medical supplies and determining which items were potentially lifesaving for Ukrainians.
Cherrie Scheinberg, a former North Lincoln Hospital Foundation board member, has been in direct contact with Brian McMurray, a trauma expert who is currently in or near Ukraine. McMurray, who serves as the ambassador to Ukraine for the American College of Emergency Physicians, messaged Scheinberg a list of supplies needed at Ukrainian military hospitals.
As the trio sorted surgical tubing, gloves and sutures, Cherrie and her friend Linda Dahan would occasionally show an item to former Samaritan surgeon, Sam Scheinberg, Cherrie’s husband who would determine if it should be shipped.
Sam, who worked at both Samaritan North Lincoln and Samaritan Pacific Communities Hospital, visited Ukraine with two other doctors seven years ago, teaching trauma techniques.
By the end of the three days of sorting the crew had sifted through more than $100,000 worth of medical supplies. The warehouse had an unusual backlog of medical supplies due to the pandemic.
Normally the items are shipped overseas to nonprofits in countries whose regulations aren’t as strict as the United States.
"Shipping has become a nightmare,” said Todd Hesutis, warehouse manager. “Not only in just the logistics of getting something somewhere, but the cost of it.”
By Thursday morning a box truck with four pallets of medical supplies started the journey to Portland and then to Ukraine.