Octavia Spencer Donates Respiratory Monitors to Hospitals Across the United States

The Oscar-winning actress wrote on Instagram that she is donating the monitors "to provide much needed relief to nurses as they navigate care for COVID-19 patients"

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Octavia Spencer . Photo: Getty Images

Octavia Spencer is doing her part to help hospitals across the United States during the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

The actress, 47, is donating Miku breathing monitors to facilities in Alabama and New York, the epicenter of the pandemic.

"I, like many of you, have felt helpless in knowing how to help during this time," Spencer wrote on Instagram Tuesday.

"Seeing what is happening in the communities that I love, I have teamed up with @Mikucare to donate monitors to nursing and medical facilities in Alabama and New York to provide much needed relief to nurses as they navigate care for COVID-19 patients," she continued, sharing a photo of a medical care worker.

The monitors that the Ma star is donating are contactless, and offer "the ability to detect nuanced changes in breathing patterns."

"With the understanding that respiration is one of the earliest indicators of illness, Miku’s breathing monitoring can indicate potential onset before other symptoms present," she explained in her Instagram post. The monitors also have talk and video capabilities which provide "patients and medical personnel a method to communicate safely and effectively with those who have contracted the highly contagious virus."

The Oscar winner then encouraged others to remain at home and follow social distancing rules amid the ongoing public health crisis.

"Please everyone do your part to stay safe and stay home in order to protect yourself and the ones you love most and I hope we can all find ways - small and large - to give back to our neighbors, family, and those on the front lines," she concluded the post.

Later on Tuesday, she shared photos of medical staff from New York's Montefiore Health Systems receiving the monitors.

"The hospital staff @montefiorehealthsystem getting familiar with the @mikucare unit," she captioned the images. "With the help of an ipad per unit (which we also donated) medical staff can monitor respiratory and communicate with 10 patients at a time. I wish I could afford to put these in every palliative care convalescent home and hospitals all across the world."

As information about the coronavirus pandemic rapidly changes, PEOPLE is committed to providing the most recent data in our coverage. Some of the information in this story may have changed after publication. For the latest on COVID-19, readers are encouraged to use online resources from CDC, WHO, and local public health departments. PEOPLE has partnered with GoFundMe to raise money for the COVID-19 Relief Fund, a GoFundMe.org fundraiser to support everything from frontline responders to families in need, as well as organizations helping communities. For more information or to donate, click here.

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