APRIL 2020 • LONGISLANDPRESS.COM 23
LI MASK MAKER WORKS OT
BY CLAUDE SOLNIK
Crosstex is busy on an ordinary day, but
these have been extraordinary times
for the Hauppauge-based brand of Hu-
FriedyGroup that manufactures masks.
Little Falls, N.J.-based Cantel Medical
owns HuFriedyGroup, its dental arm,
which includes the Crosstex brand,
makes masks, systems, to maintain and
sterilize dental equipment, dental towels,
bibs, hand sanitizer, and other products.
Crosstex, with operations predominantly
on Long Island, has ramped up to about 4
million masks a week, including a smaller
operation in Rochester where two more
manufacturing lines were added. The
coronavirus pandemic has disrupted
some global supply chains abroad and
boosted demand for Crosstex’s masks.
“At the outset of this crisis, we ramped up
all of our production,” HuFriedyGroup
President Ken Serota says. “We are
currently running basically 24 hours,
seven days a week in order to keep up
That’s up from five days a week and
12 hours a day for the company that
supplies distributors, such as
Melville-based Henry Schein.
Crosstex, founded in 1953, supplies
dental products sold in about 100
item” and expects
“The increase in
seeing is in large part
because the production of the majority
of these is overseas,” Serota says. “Given
the onset of the virus in China, the flow
of product from China has been cut off to
a significant extent.”
Crosstex uses what it calls SecureFit
mask fit and
“That is unique technology,” Serota says.
“That’s critically important to get maximum
He says Crosstex has orders beyond the
fall as companies seek to lock in production
“Demand for personal protective equipment
is crazy high,” Serota says.
As to masks used to boost security
against the virus, Serota says people
should heed U.S. Centers for
Disease Control and Prevention
guidelines and not expose themselves
to greater risk because of
“Common sense is first and foremost,”
he adds. “Social distancing.
Avoid putting yourself in at-risk
areas. Avoid crowds. Those are all
Hauppauge-based Crosstex makes in-demand masks. critically important.”
These are unprecedented times. I will not mention the statistics
here, because by the time you read this they will be wrong. Let
me begin, instead, by saying how proud I am of the nurses and
physicians, the technologists and administrators, and all the other
people who make Huntington Hospital the exceptional institution
and local resource that it is.
To meet the challenge of COVID-19 in our community, we
have cancelled all elective surgeries and many other procedures,
repurposed beds to expand critical care capacity and redirected
dozens of physicians and other providers – hospitalists, nurse
practitioners, PA staff and residents – to create a vastly expanded
workforce for providing intensive care. Some models predict a
dire period of resource shortage, when the number of individuals
requiring ventilators far outstrips the supply. On the other hand,
if aggressive interventions – especially social distancing – have
their desired effect, we may still avert the worst scenarios.
As this situation has unfolded, we have been amazed by
the incredible support of our community. Food for our staff,
donations of supplies, and offers to volunteer – these have been
overwhelming illustrations of the big-hearted generosity that
defines Huntingtonians, and I thank you for them on behalf
of our team.
Please know that we are working very closely with our colleagues
across Northwell Health, our town, county and state governments
to meet this challenge of a lifetime. We stand ready to do what
we all trained for – to heal the infirmed and save lives. Finally,
I ask you to observe the tips listed below to stop the spread of
COVID-19. Be well and be safe.
Tips for Long Islanders:
1. Stay home.
2. If you have to go out, stay six feet away from others.
3. Use hand sanitizer.
4. If you have a fever, talk to your doctor or visit a Northwell Health-GoHealth
Urgent Care Center.
5. Don’t visit an Emergency Department unless you need to.
6. Donate blood if you can.
Nick Fitterman, MD, MACP
Michael Grosso, MD, FAAP