As the number of confirmed coronavirus cases continues to rise, healthcare workers around the world have struggled to find the personal protective equipment they need. In an effort to help narrow the supply gap, one company famed for making buildable toys is stepping in to help. LEGO is making visors for healthcare workers fighting COVID-19 on the frontlines.
"Doctors and nurses fighting COVID-19 are in desperate need of safety equipment," LEGO, a Danish toy production company based in Billund, Denmark, said in a video statement shared last week on the company's official Twitter account. "That's why six of our moulding machines in the Billund factory have been dedicated to making safety visors."
According to LEGO, the six moulding machines have enabled the toy company to produce 13,500 visors a day. If more visors are needed, LEGO said it would quickly be able to ramp up production. "If the need is there, we can, within two weeks, deliver 58,00 daily," the company said in its video.
Current guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) for healthcare personnel treating patients suspected or confirmed to have COVID-19 includes recommendations to wear a respirator or medical grade face mask along with gloves, gown, and eye protection such visors or face shields. According to the CDC, the novel coronavirus can spread via person-to-person transmission when respiratory droplets produced when an infected person speaks, coughs, or sneezes land in the mouth, nose, or eyes of another. Because of this, personal protective equipment such as the visors LEGO has taken to producing are considered vital resources for healthcare workers treating COVID-19 patients.
"We know that every little [bit] helps right now, so we're thankful to our colleagues who are supporting the healthcare heroes working to keep us safe," LEGO tweeted last week. According to the toy company, more than 100 LEGO employees have so far dedicated their time to the visor project.
LEGO's visor design has been approved by hospital personnel and an order for 50,000 visors has already been placed, LEGO announced last week. As the global fight against the virus continues, LEGO has said it plans to expand production of its visors to some of its other factories, starting first with its factory in Nyíregyháza, Hungary.
The visors aren't LEGO's first effort to aid the global fight against coronavirus; LEGO announced it had donated $50 million to Education Cannot Wait, a global nonprofit organization focused on providing education for children in times of crisis
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