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Trump announces automakers will produce ventilators amid coronavirus outbreak

Ford, General Motors, Tesla to produce medical equipment in response to supply shortages

President Donald Trump speaks during press briefing with the coronavirus task force, at the White House, Wednesday, March 18, 2020, in Washington. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)
President Donald Trump speaks during press briefing with the coronavirus task force, at the White House, Wednesday, March 18, 2020, in Washington. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci) (Copyright 2020 The Associated Press. All rights reserved)

U.S. President Donald Trump has announced that Ford, General Motors and Tesla are now able to produce ventilators and other metal products to aid health facilities amid the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak.

Trump says the automakers will produce necessary materials quickly, as medical equipment shortages are occurring across the country.

Hospitals nationwide are expecting a need for more ventilators as the virus could cause an influx of patients who need critical care.

This news comes after GM and Ford had already agreed to assist the Trump administration however possible amid the pandemic.

General Motors has already been working with Ventec and StopTheSpread.org to help Ventec, a medical device company, increase ventilator production amid the coronavirus outbreak.

“We are working closely with Ventec to rapidly scale up production of their critically important respiratory products to support our country’s fight against the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Mary Barra, GM Chairman and CEO. “We will continue to explore ways to help in this time of crisis.”

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On Monday Ventec and GM issued a joint statement on the progress of collaboration efforts to build more ventilators.

"Ventec Life Systems and General Motors have been working around the clock to implement plans to build more critical care ventilators. With GM’s support, Ventec is now planning exponentially higher ventilator production as fast as possible.

This partnership combines Ventec Life Systems' life-saving technology and General Motors' manufacturing expertise to respond to the urgent and growing need for more ventilators. As part of those efforts, GM is exploring the feasibility to build ventilators for Ventec at a GM facility in Kokomo, Indiana.

Both companies have been proactively working together to arm medical professionals on the front lines with the tools they need to respond to this pandemic and save lives. Additional updates will be provided as they are available," the statement read.


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