In 2012, P.O.C.C. was adopted fully under the umbrella of core projects hosted by PHI!
P.O.C.C. was created to save surplus usable P&O goods from being sent to landfills while innumerable individuals around the world are in need of prostheses and orthoses. P.O.C.C. provides individuals, P&O facilities, manufacturers and distributors a clearinghouse that enables them to make tax deductible donations of new and gently used prosthetic goods and new orthotic goods. These donations, in turn, afford non-governmental organizations (NGOs), P&O practitioners, developing world P&O schools, developing world P&O facilities and researchers access to these badly needed and often costly goods.
Goals and Objectives
P.O.C.C. GOAL: To elevate the quantity and quality of prosthetic and orthotic rehabilitation services everywhere.
- to facilitate the provision of new and used prosthetic and orthotic components to those who do not have access to them
- to ensure that prosthetic and orthotic distributions are used to enhance the quality of services at local prosthetic and orthotic clinics while ensuring that they do not have detrimental effects on any local prosthetic or orthotic industry (see the P&O Humanitarian Code of Conduct for more information)
- to keep usable prosthetic and orthotic goods from entering landfills
- to provide individuals, manufacturers, distributors and facilities a means by which to receive tax deductions for donations of prosthetic and orthotic goods
- to illuminate the plight of the disabled around the world who are in need of, but do not have access to, prosthetic and orthotic services
- to facilitate access to P&O Goods for teaching and research purposes and institutions and universities worldwide
As of January 1, 2013,
is over 8 TONS!!!
The Prosthetic & Orthotic Component Clearinghouse (P.O.C.C.; pronounced Pahk-see…rhymes with Foxy!) was launched by PHI founder Robert Kistenberg in July 2007 as a collaborative project between MedShare International, U.S. National Member Society of ISPO (US-ISPO), the MSPO Program at Georgia Tech and the Barr Foundation.
At the end of 2012, P.O.C.C.’s arrangement with MedShare International and the Barr Foundation expired and we sought a new warehouse home or risked having to put into landfill almost EIGHT TONS of P&O Goods being stored! Fortuitously, PHI now has a partnership with The Bobby Dodd Institute which has allowed this very important program to continue on.
Donate items to P.O.C.C.
Thank you for considering making your donation of P&O goods to P.O.C.C. We strive to distribute the donations we receive so that:
- the technology is appropriate to the environment in which it will be used
- the components match the needs of those who will be utilizing them
- the practitioners providing the clinical services using the components are adequately trained
- follow up care is available
- P&O goods are not re-sold in developing nations inadvertently supplying a "black market"
In 2012, P.O.C.C. was adopted fully under the umbrella of core projects hosted by PHI!
Guidelines for P.O.C.C. Donors
While we strive to make every effort to prevent waste, there are some items that are just not recyclable or reusable. In order to prevent you from spending money unnecessarily shipping unusable items and then our volunteers from spending time sorting through unusable items, please review the GUIDELINES below. Before sending anything that requires a pallet please contact us so the warehouse can be notified in advance.
The following PROSTHETIC items are acceptable as donations:
- Complete artificial limbs in new or gently used condition
- Non-rusted components in new or gently used condition (pylons, pyramids, clamps, shuttle locks, etc.)
- Prosthetic feet (with the foot shell intact) in new or gently used condition
- New or gently used prosthetic knees of all types
- New prosthetic socks or sheaths
- New shrinkers
- Molding dummies
- PVA bags
- New or gently used cosmetic covers
- New or gently used suspension belts
The following ORTHOTIC items are acceptable as donations:
- New orthotic goods in original packaging, including off the shelf items
- New orthotic fabrication supplies
- Joints and fabrication dummies in new or good condition
The following GENERAL items are acceptable as donations:
- Casting materials (stockinette, plaster bandages, non-expired fiberglass rolls, etc.)
- Hand tools
- New Ace bandages
- Carbon Fiber
- Other Textiles
- Plastic sheets
- Foam sheets (Pelite, Plastazote, etc.)
The following items are NOT acceptable as donations:
- Broken, rusty or non-functional components
- Used prosthetic liners
- Used prosthetic socks
- Resin, catalyst or promoter
- Used orthoses
- Any chemicals
- Mastectomy products
- As a rule of thumb, if you wouldn't put on your spouse, your child or your mother, please don't send it to us.
If you have questions about your donations or would like to donate something that is not on the list above, please contact us.
If you have something to give, please complete this P.O.C.C. DONATION FORM to alert us of your incoming shipment and to assist us in providing you with tax deduction documentation.
If you have something to give, please send it to the address below:
PHI POCC Project
c/o School of Applied Physiology
Georgia Institute of Technology
555 14th Street
Atlanta, GA 30332-0356
- Include your name or company’s name and address on the outside of the box in order for PHI to properly match your donation application with your donation shipment
- It is helpful, but not required, for you to include a letter or note including your name and address as well as what you have sent.
- PHI cannot pay for the cost of shipping donations to P.O.C.C., however; you can claim the shipping expenses as part of your tax deductible donation to P.O.C.C.
- Once items are received a tax deduction letter will be sent to you.
Upon receipt of your donated P&O Goods at P.O.C.C., we will send to you a tax donation receipt from Prosthetic Hope International as we are a US 501(c)3 non-profit organization. That receipt will be sent according to the weight of the P&O Goods you sent.
Ultimately, the amount of money you choose to deduct from your taxes must be decided between you and your CPA. By way of guidance for individuals making device donations, PHI offers the following suggestions:
- Since PHI does not pay for shipping, you can deduct the amount spent on shipping the items to us.
- You should base the worth of your donated goods upon either the amount you paid out of pocket for the device(s) or upon the value of the components that can be salvaged from the donation. Put another way, if your insurance company paid $20,000 for the device, that does NOT mean that you can claim $20,000 for the device.
Request items from P.O.C.C.
In order to receive items from the P.O.C.C., you must first review the Guidelines for Recipients section in order to ensure your eligibility. Once you have completed reviewing these and if you believe you are indeed eligible to request a distribution, please review the Instructions to Obtain P&O Goods section also below.
Guidelines for Recipients
- It is strictly forbidden for any items received from P.O.C.C. to be directly sold or re-sold. Use of P&O goods shall be restricted to the provision of prosthetic and orthotic services. Nominal fees for the provision of P&O services are acceptable.
- Components are to be provided by individuals who are educated & trained in prosthetic and orthotic rehabilitation services. This is to ensure that the P&O goods are being properly and safely applied. Documentation of education/training is required upon request
- Your organization is responsible for the cost of shipping, warehouse fees, navigating customs, as well as any duties or taxes associated with receipt of P&O goods.
- As a participant of this project, you are accountable for the P&O goods being provided. As such, we require documentation of component utilization once services have been delivered.
- We also strongly request that you or your organization review the P&O Humanitarian Code of Conduct and sign on.
- Before delivering services in a developing country, it is imperative that you investigate the existing clinical services in that region. We are trying to foster collaboration with and growth of existing prosthetic and orthotic clinical services, NOT competition against them. We are happy to assist you with this.
- Once you receive a distribution, we require that you send us some proof of delivery of the P&O Goods in order to qualify for future shipments and to demonstrate that the P&O Goods were delivered as intended. A photo will suffice.
- If you are from an educational institution in the U.S. or abroad and you would like to request a distribution from P.O.C.C. for educational or research purposes, you are still obligated for the cost of shipping as well as the warehousing fees.
Instructions to Obtain P&O Goods
FEES: Recipients are responsible for a warehouse fee based on the final weight of the distribution, payable through our PayPal site. If you include your preferred shipper (FedEx, UPS or DHL) on the application form and the shipping number, we can charge the shipping fees to your account. The warehouse fees need to be paid prior to shipment. Regarding the fees:
- PHI Members receive an annual $35 credit toward a P.O.C.C. shipment
- Member rate: $35 for first 10 lb. of goods, plus $2/lb. thereafter
- Non-member rate: $50 for first 10 lb. of goods, plus $3/lb. thereafter
- If you live close to the P.O.C.C. warehouse in Atlanta, onsite pick up can be arranged. Otherwise we will need your preferred shipping company and account number.
- If you are traveling internationally, it is critical that you plan far in advance so that there is adequate time for application submission, application review and inventory distribution request processing. We suggest that you begin the application process at least 8 weeks prior to a planned departure.
P.O.C.C. by the Numbers
While the most significant impact of P.O.C.C. efforts is felt by the hundreds of people who have received clinical services who otherwise would not be able to get prostheses or orthoses, it is difficult for us to quantify the number of people who have been served through our distributions.
Alternately, as a measure of our environmental impact, everything that comes into and goes out of P.O.C.C. is weighed. This allows us to track our progress with objective numbers. As of January 1, 2013, P.O.C.C. has processed 14,885 pounds of goods. The breakdown is presented in the graph below.
Trash, the blue bars, consists of items which we cannot use or recycle. We have made efforts to reduce the amount of trash we process by emphasizing in our Guidelines what is appropriate and what is not as shipping “trash” is costly for people to ship and wasteful of our time to process.
Recycling, the red bars, includes cardboard, metal and plastics which are not useable for clinical applications but can be sent to commercial recyclers to generate income.
P&O Facilities, the green bars, is the general category of all distributions sent for direct clinical care. This is the area we’d like to see grow exponentially.
MedShare distributions, the purple bars, consist of orthotic goods that are considered to be “off the shelf”. Items which do not require a certified or licensed orthotist to assemble and deliver are sorted and sent to MedShare International. MedShare support Orthopedic Hospitals around the world which have a demand for these types of items. While P.O.C.C. is no longer housed in the MedShare warehouse, we maintain a strong and supportive relationship.
While we started in July 2007, we only started effectively tracking everything in 2008. That year, we realized we had a large amount of plastics that could not be used. Rather than landfill, we found a recycler.
In 2009 & 2010, we focused more on tracking clinical distributions but came to realize that in order to get the full picture, we needed to weigh everything.
2011 and 2012 are considered our baseline years as we now have our processes in place and are working diligently to establish new partners for both donations and distributions. Moving the entire stock from MedShare to Bobby Dodd at the end of 2012/beginning of 2013 did prove to be a formidable organizational challenge; however it was met with strong determination and ultimately, P.O.C.C. has a new home.
Volunteer at P.O.C.C.
You can become a part of POCC by volunteering with us at the P.O.C.C. warehouse located in Atlanta, Georgia. The facility is open weekdays from 7:30 am to 4:30 pm. During this time we sort donations, disassemble devices, organize them and update the online inventory with the newly received goods. The volunteer sessions are organized by the student group called Promoting Orthotics and Prosthetics (POP) at Georgia Institute of Technology (POP’s website). Fill out the Volunteer Form to let us know you’re interested in volunteering with P.O.C.C.