Providers nationwide asking local communities for donations of crutches, medical equipment amid global aluminum shortage

November 2, 2021 – Amid a global shortage of aluminum, providers across the country are now experiencing shortages of some medical equipment, namely crutches and other similar devices.

According to Spectrum News 1, Shriners Children’s Hospital (Lexington, KY) was told by one of its vendors that they are unsure when they’ll have more crutches to sell.

The shortages are forcing hospital staff at Shriners Children’s Hospital to ask their community for donations of gently used crutches and other medical equipment. Thanks to a social media campaign, the hospital collected 50 sets of crutches in only a few days.

Shriners Children’s Hospital isn’t the only one turning to their community for donations. Beaufort Memorial (Beaufort, SC) has also asked locals for donations of “gently used adult crutches” because of global supply shortages.

Earlier this month, Charleston Area Medical Center (Charleston, WV) and Southeast Georgia Health System (Brunswick, GA) issued similar calls for help to their communities.

On Monday, Intermountain Healthcare, University of Utah Health, Steward Health and the Utah Hospital Association announced a donation drive to collect metal crutches, walkers, canes and non-motorized wheelchairs.

The aluminum shortage could become a much bigger problem in the near future. Axios reports that the end of the year is typically the busiest time for orthopedic surgeries because people try to squeeze in their surgeries before the end of the year before their deductibles reset in January.