Apple is helping with the global coronavirus epidemic by designing and producing face shields for medical workers.
These shields are in high demand as hospitals and medical organizations struggle to acquire enough personal protective equipment (PPE) to keep doctors, nurses, and other medical workers safe.
“We’ve launched a company-wide effort, bringing together product designers, engineering, operations and packaging teams, and our suppliers to design, produce, and ship face shields for health workers.”Apple CEO Tim Cook
The company has already started shipping the Apple-made face shields to medical professionals in the Santa Clara area.
Apple said it received positive feedback from doctors who work at the local Kaiser hospital facilities where some of the masks were donated.
Apple said it could produce up to 1 million face shields a week. The company can pack them 100 at a time in boxes that are ready to ship.
The face shields are designed to be effective and efficient, requiring no more than two minutes of assembly.
Besides manufacturing face shields, Apple also is helping to obtain another 20 million surgical masks through the company’s extensive supply chain contacts.
This isn’t the first time Apple leveraged its positions to get medical supplies. The company has already donated 20 million protective N95 masks to medical and health organizations that need them.
Apple responded swiftly and decisively when the coronavirus epidemic began its global spread. The company closed its corporate offices and asked it’s employees to work from home if possible. It also closed all of its retail stores outside of China and pledged to keep them closed until they are safe to re-open.
When Apple first closed its stores, the company offered to pay its employees according to their regular schedule. The company also delivered generous donations of materials and money to relief efforts both in Italy and the Santa Clara area.