In a time of crisis, one local business is working longer hours and shifting its priorities in order to save lives.

Daavlin, located on West Bement Street in Bryan, is a leading manufacturer of phototherapeutic products, which are a treatment option for those who suffer from psoriasis.

Another option to treat psoriasis is a systemic drug therapy. However, these drugs, generally used in cases of moderate to severe psoriasis, will further suppress the user’s immune system.

“It’s a really bad time to be immunosuppressed,” said Bob Golding, vice president at Daavlin. “That’s how people die of coronavirus.”

So, as some patients look to switch from drugs to phototherapy, and as others find their access to clinics with phototherapy equipment suddenly limited, Daavlin has faced a heightened demand for its products.

“I gave a pep talk to our people, told them we’ve got to ship these machines to patients,” Golding said. “If we can drop them out of the high-risk category to lower-risk, it’s not just an abstract thing, we can save lives.”

As such, the company working increased hours and is pulling employees from different areas and asking them to focus on production of this equipment.

Personal protective equipment

On another front, Daavlin is addressing potential shortages of personal protective equipment (PPE) as health care facilities prepare for increased cases.

According to a New York Times report, facilities across the country have experienced a shortage of PPE, surgical masks in particular.

Golding said Bryan-based Community Hospitals and Wellness Centers reached out about the possibility of using Daavlin’s equipment to sterilize the hospital’s masks as a preemptive measure to keep doctors and patients as safe as possible and limit the spread of COVID-19.

Golding got to work producing a piece of equipment that uses ultraviolet germicidal irradiation (UVC) to sterilize PPE.

The equipment has already been put to work at CHWC and Daavlin is in the process of shipping the equipment to other hospitals to potentially help them in the same way.

“It’s literally now part of CHWC’s plan to use that as needed,” Golding said.

With the increased workload, Golding said the company has made a few extra hires, and has considered further increasing its staff, or hiring temps, although those discussions remain preliminary.

In the meantime, Golding said, “We’re just doing our part.”

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