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The MEP National Network Responds to Urgent Need for Medical Supplies in Wake of Hurricane Ian

Team of emergency medical service
Credit: iStock/Chalabala

FloridaMakes, part of the MEP National NetworkTM, received an urgent request in the aftermath of Hurricane Ian, which hit Florida as a Category 4 hurricane on Sept. 28, 2022. The storm destroyed buildings and roads, and left many people without power and water. The call to FloridaMakes came from CDR Maguire, a company that provides disaster health and medical services. They needed help locating defibrillators and related accessories, some likely hard to source, as they set up field hospitals in southwest Florida. The request was urgent – the items were needed within 48 hours to help evacuees in need of medical attention.

FloridaMakes immediately mobilized, despite having no power or internet. They reached out across the state and the country, using every available resource to locate the needed equipment. In less than a day, FloridaMakes received a flood of responses, including an introduction from the Massachusetts MEP to Zoll Medical Corporation, a company that manufactures the needed defibrillator systems.

Zoll and CDR Maguire arranged for immediate procurement and delivery of the equipment for deployment in Southwest Florida. This nearly $2 million procurement was executed in record time. CDR Maguire has a huge task ahead of them, as the hurricane completely destroyed several hospitals and the need for medical services is high. With the help of FloridaMakes and Zoll Medical Corporation, CDR Maguire is now better equipped to serve people impacted by Hurricane Ian in Florida.

Finding Domestic Suppliers

MEP Centers across the country help match needs like CDR Maguire’s with the domestic manufacturers that can meet them. Supply chain disruptions have led to a greater demand for this supplier scouting service.

At no cost, local MEP Center staff can scout for domestic manufacturers that have the capacity, capability and interest to meet immediate needs. Results are aggregated from input provided by MEP Centers across the nation and sent to the requesting MEP Center so they can start a dialogue with the potential suppliers. MEP Centers facilitate these company interactions.

The MEP National Network has served U.S. manufacturers for more than 30 years. MEP Centers have access to more than 1,400 trusted advisors and experts across the country, with an MEP Center in every state and Puerto Rico. The extensive knowledge and relationships among MEP Center staff make successfully sourcing domestic products and capabilities possible. These connections enable MEP Centers to make connections and deliver resources that literally save lives.

Your Local MEP Center Can Help with Domestic Sourcing

Your local MEP Center can help you find domestic products and capabilities, whether it’s for immediate problem-solving or growing your business. MEP Center staff have the technical industry knowledge, expertise, market understanding and network connections to support your efforts.

Manufacturing opportunities are found where operational capabilities meet potential prospects’ needs. Contact your local MEP Center to get started.

About the author

Micah “Doc” Daugherty

Micah “Doc” Daugherty is a FloridaMakes Business Advisor working with the South Florida Manufacturer’s Association. He started his career at Weirton Steel Corporation in Weirton, West Virginia, where he spent 15 years and served as a Regional Sales Manager for Tin Mill Products, Operations Planning Supervisor, and Metallurgical Technician. He moved to Florida in 2003 and started his own steel trading and consulting business. Through the ownership and operation of this business, Micah gained extensive knowledge on international business, sales and marketing, supply chain management, and the import and export process.

During his career in manufacturing, Micah has used his 30 years of experience to implement process improvement solutions to a broad range of industries, including: aerospace, chemical processes, metals fabrication, machining, arms manufacturing and assembly, automotive, and food processing (to name a few). Micah also served as a Project Manager with the former MEP affiliate in Florida, where he supported Florida manufacturers and businesses in implementing Lean Transformation, Quality Systems, Inventory Management, and Supply Chain Solutions.

Mike Aller

Mike Aller serves as Director of Supplier Development at FloridaMakes. His areas of technical emphasis and strategic engagement include helping Florida’s aviation & aerospace, defense, medical devices, personal protective equipment and power generation manufacturing industries strengthen their domestic manufacturing supply chains, as well as improve their resilience to adverse events and identify and capture new opportunities in commercial space, critical infrastructure, national security and other fast-growing markets.

Together with colleagues and partners across the state and the nation, Mike has worked to develop and roll out a series of value-added tools and resources to support the interconnectedness, growth, productivity and resilience of Florida’s and our nation’s manufacturing ecosystem. These value-added resources include the Connex Florida and Connex Marketplace supplier connection platforms, the Florida Defense Cybersecurity Training Program, supplier opportunity forums in high-growth and nationally critical sectors of manufacturing, and a series of assessments for supply chain risk management and disaster recovery and resilience for manufacturers of all sizes.

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