Local companies receive Innovation Grant from the State of Hawaii

Sponsored by State of Hawaii and HTDC Innovation Grants for the PPE Supply Chain

Personal protective equipment has become a household term over the past year. The State of Hawaii is now funding an Innovation Grant for the PPE Supply chain program. HI Now host Kanoe Gibson spoke with two grantees to learn about how it has impacted their small businesses.

InsightPPE, one of the grantees, strives to develop and manufacture high quality PPE products to better equip first responders and healthcare workers with the most advanced protective goggles. Its non-medical KN95 filter insert is made with electrocharged filtration that is designed to support workers in high traffic areas who are exposed to airborne aerosols as small as 0.1microns.

KN95 Filter Inserts were developed when the availability of N95 and KN95 masks were in high demand, costs were increasing, and availability was low. The material manufacturer was approved by CDC NIOSH and tested to 0.1 micron at 99 percent efficiency. InsightPPE’s solution to was to provide KN95 Filter Inserts that could be utilized in cloth masks with pockets that are more commonly seen. In the long run, these filter inserts are more cost effective than disposable masks and provide higher filtration efficiency then cotton alone.

The funding has allowed InsightPPE to develop and manufacture both KN95 Filter Inserts and a sealed goggle with viral efficiency filtered ventilation. With studies on COVID-19 being spread as an airborne aerosol, eye protection was equally important for first responders and healthcare workers.

For more information on InsightPPE, visit insightppe.com.

With this State of Hawaii grant, Pictures Plus is another business that was able to help the community by creating beautiful face masks and face shields.

“I am very grateful for this program and how it has improved the supply chain for our residents,” says Kent Untermann with Pictures Plus.

With this funding, Pictures Plus put together a family oriented program for children that was born out of Untermann’s own family traditions. The business launched a program of giving away a free mask to each child that writes something nice about their parents or stories about how their parents helped them get through COVID-19.

“This program idea actually came from my two children,” he explains. “When they were growing up, my family had a tradition of sharing what they appreciated about each other around the dinner table every single night. So when the pandemic hit, it got me thinking about that tradition and how important the appreciation of our families was becoming.”

The program has been going on for a few months and children that want to participate can send Pictures Plus a picture or their own art or messages and the business will print it on a free mask. Children who want to participate can visit: picturesplusprints.com/free-custom-face-masks.

For more information, visit: picturesplus.com