Milliken & Company Increases Inventory of Reusable Protective Medical Fabrics for PPEJul 29, 2020 10:36AM ● By David Dykes
Spartanburg-based Milliken & Company, a global diversified manufacturer with more than 150 years of textile expertise, said it has invested significant resources to increase domestic production of its Milliken Perimeter advanced medical fabrics.
Since March, the company has distributed more than 10 million yards of reusable medical fabrics in response to the global shortage of personal protective equipment (PPE). The recent inventory increase signals Milliken's continued commitment to ensuring a sustainable, U.S.-based PPE supply chain, company officials said.
Reusable medical textiles are ideal when cost is a driving factor and when single-use PPE supply is limited or unreliable, the officials said.
Milliken said the current demand for protective medical garments and the potential for shortages in the fall and winter prompted the company to prioritize production of the advanced material.
The company said garments made with Perimeter fabric can be laundered for safe reuse at least 25 times.
"Scaling up U.S. manufacturing of reusable protective fabrics protects the country's PPE pipeline, which in turn protects more medical professionals," said Chad McAllister, president of Milliken's Textile Division and EVP, Milliken & Co. "These brave people have continued to care for us tirelessly, and we are committed to doing all we can to help keep them safe."
Milliken's Perimeter fabric is not only engineered for manufacturing Level 1 and 2 gowns for critical medical environments such as trauma centers but also provides a solution for other industries such as dental, educational and hospitality environments where advanced PPE is now important, company officials said.
The material's ability to be used multiple times while maintaining a protective barrier makes it a cost-effective, made-in-USA alternative to single-use PPE, they said.
"An increasing number of industries and service providers are looking for American-made PPE solutions to protect their employees and customers. This demand highlights the critical need we noted earlier this year, specifically for the U.S. to have a stable PPE supply chain," McAllister said. "Our goal at Milliken is to be part of the solution, so we're proactively taking steps to help avoid another shortage of critical PPE."
Milliken said it is collaborating with industry partners to ensure protective garments made with Milliken Perimeter fabric are available immediately across the country.