MIAMI VALLEY — Governor Mike DeWine recently announced that, through the Ohio Manufacturing Alliance, 19 manufacturers have partnered with three hospital groups to begin large scale production of face shields, including Evenflo in Piqua. Over the next five weeks, 750,000 to 1 million face shields will be added to the Ohio Department of Health stockpile.
The face shield production is part of Ohio’s strategy to buy personal protective equipment (PPE) when it is available, make PPE when it cannot be purchased, and use technology and innovation to identify ways to make Ohio’s PPE supplies last.
“These face shields will make a difference as we fight this invisible enemy,” said DeWine in a press release. “The Ohio Manufacturing Alliance sent out a call for help producing PPE and more than 1,500 manufacturing companies responded. This reinforces what we know about Ohio companies. They are generous and will answer the call when needed. Together, we are going to protect our protectors and strengthen our manufacturing sector.”
In the Miami Valley, the local effort is being coordinated by FastLane, which is the Manufacturing Extension Partnership (MEP) for West Central Ohio and housed within the University of Dayton Research Institute. According to FastLane, the initial effort of this manufacturing alliance includes four companies that make tools and molds, including Trifecta Tool and Engineering in Kettering, creating the molds for the face shields. Another four companies, including Evenflo in Piqua, are expected to begin mass production of the face shields next week.
Manufacturers who can help with PPE production should visit RepurposingProject.com for more information. Those with donations should visit coronavirus.ohio.gov.