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Coronavirus Prompts Medical And Manufacturing Innovation

Apr 10, 2020

Credit Ohio Governor's Office

Ohio hospitals struggling to find ways to protect health care workers and treat patients got some good news this week. 

Alison Holm reports.

Governor Mike DeWine says medical and manufacturing innovations are helping Ohio battle the coronavirus which has put personal protective gear for healthcare workers at a premium. In his daily briefing Thursday DeWine announced that 19 manufacturers from northeast Ohio have partnered with three hospitals, to begin producing face shields. DeWine says the group moved “from prototype to production” in just two weeks.

 

“They found die cutters, injection molders, elastic band cutters, plastic suppliers and assembliers to help all of this come together.

 

DeWine says in the next five weeks they will be able to make up to 1 million masks that can be sterilized and reused. They will be distributed across Ohio by the state Department of Health.

 

Meanwhile a Cincinnati hospital has received approval from the Food and Drug Administration to move ahead with a medical treatment derived from the plasma of COVID-19 survivors. The plasma protocol was developed by researchers at Christ Hospital in Cincinnati, and Lieutenant Governor Jon Husted says it’s another example of the medical innovations happening in Ohio.

 

“Now they are taking this statewide to the hospitals across the state that are prepared to use this tool.”

 

Less than two weeks ago, following pressure from Governor DeWine and the White House, the FDA approved new technology developed by Columbus-based Battelle to sterilize N95 masks for healthcare workers. Two machines in Columbus are now sterilizing up to 160-thousand masks a day, and Battelle is sending equipment to several other cities.