The Nassau University Medical Center teamed up with Adopt-a-Soldier Platoon, Inc. to ship nearly 100 scrubs to American soldiers in Afghanistan earlier this month — all with the help of an East Meadow resident.
It was the second time NUMC officials have participated in the program. In 2007, they sent scrubs to military hospitals in Kuwait.
Adopt-a-Soldier Platoon, founded in 2003 by Alan Krutchkoff, is a nonprofit organization that sends care packages to deployed military units, and engages in special projects with the goal of improving morale for soldiers.
The organization regularly sends DVDs, books, exercise mats, food, Christmas trees, sports equipment, pillows and more.
The coordination between the NUMC and Adopt-a-Soldier was facilitated by East Meadow resident Ben Diamond, an employee of HCCS Effective Compliance Solutions, a company that works with hospitals throughout the country, including NUMC.
Diamond, a lifelong East Meadow resident and an East Meadow High School graduate, said he met Krutchkoff in an airport several years ago. The two began conversing, and, after learning of each other’s work, swapped business cards.
Three weeks later, Krutchkoff called Diamond and told him, “I have a mission for you,” informing him of a mash unit in Kuwait that was in dire need of scrubs.
HCCS represents 600 hospitals across the country. “I reached out to all of them,” Diamond said, “and Nassau was the first to say ‘Yup, we’re in.’”
NUMC officials, including laundry director Walter Lazauskas and Chief Compliance Officer Karen Leslie, arranged for 160 colorful scrubs to be shipped overseas.
Earlier this summer, Krutchkoff wrote Diamond again to ask for his help, this time for troops in Afghanistan. Diamond sent emails to 10 different hospitals, and again, it was NUMC who answered the call first.
Diamond said Krutchkoff asked for 50 scrubs — NUMC sent 90. “It warms my heart that we’re a Long Island business, and I reached out to 10 businesses across the country,” said Diamond, “and Nassau University was the first one to come back.”