HARRISBURG, Pa. – UPMC Pinnacle presented more than 120 pieces of protective equipment, including vests, steel plates and helmets, to the Harrisburg Police Department today at an event in the City Government Center. These ballistic vests differ from what officers typically wear during their shifts, because they can provide protection against most high-caliber weapons. In total, 40 Body Armor Level III Ballistic Vests (with steel plates, liners, and pads), 20 additional steel plates, and 60 helmets were given to the Harrisburg City Police.
Emergency Department (ED) nurses at UPMC Pinnacle Harrisburg raised more than $20,000 through the 3.2 to Protect the Blue 5K hosted in June 2018. The Pinnacle Health Foundation supported the event with an additional contribution which increased the number of protective bullet proof vests, carriers, and helmets that could be purchased. This is part of UPMC Pinnacle’s $18.8 million contribution in community benefits to the region.
“UPMC Pinnacle ED physicians and nurses have a great bond with the Harrisburg Police Department. Upon learning that they needed money to purchase protective trauma vests and equipment, our nurses sprang into action, and the ‘3.2 to Protect the Blue’ was born,” said Kathy Hogan-Flinn, MPA, BSN, RN, nursing director of emergency services at UPMC Pinnacle. “We are thrilled to present the vests and equipment to our fellow first responders today.”
More than 530 people participated in the run which had a slight modification: runners ran an extra tenth of a mile (for a total of 3.2 miles) in honor of current officers and those who have fallen in the line of duty. Supporters waved flags and held signs to honor fallen officers from Pennsylvania during the last leg of the race.
“We sincerely thank UPMC Pinnacle for its dedication to the safety and well-being of the residents of Harrisburg,” said Mayor Eric Papenfuse. “And we particularly thank UPMC Pinnacle for partnering with Commissioner Tom Carter and our dedicated police officers who work every day to keep our city safe.”
UPMC purchased all of this from Body Armor Megastore in Pennsylvania, who donated 10 additional body armor vest sets.