A 3D printer company is creating medical face shields for doctors and nurses fighting coronavirus — here's how it works

Erin Clark/The Boston Globe via Getty ImagesHealthcare workers must wear protective gear when dealing with patients with an infectious disease.
  • The coronavirus outbreak that originated in China has killed more than 15,000 people worldwide and infected more than 349,000, according to recent totals.
  • The US has reported more than 35,000 cases and 470 deaths.
  • A couple outside of Syracuse, New York, are using their 3D-printing business to print hundreds of face shields for healthcare workers, Syracuse.com reported.
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

As the novel coronavirus disease, COVID-19, that originated in China, continues to spread worldwide, healthcare workers are facing a shortage of supplies, including protective face masks.

One couple in a town outside of Syracuse, New York, turned their 3D-printer business into a manufacturing site for face shields to be used by workers at COVID-19 test sites in the county, Syracuse.com first reported.

Isaac Budmen and Stephanie Keefe, through their company Budmen Industries, are printing visors, which are worn by healthcare workers. A piece of polyethylene sheeting is attached to the visor to act as a protective barrier between healthcare workers and patients. The polyethylene can be either sanitised between uses or replaced.

As of Monday, COVID-19, the coronavirus disease, has infected more than 349,000 people worldwide, and has killed more than 15,000.

On March 11, the World Health Organisation (WHO) officially declared it a pandemic. The virus has disrupted travel worldwide, leading to flight cancellations, quarantines, and other breakdowns in movement. New York City, Los Angeles, and Washington state, among other US locations, have closed bars and restaurants except for takeout as experts warn about the importance of social distancing in slowing the spread of the virus.

The couple started by printing 50 shields on Sunday, and had 16 printers working to produce 300 shields by the end of last week.

Budmen Industries

The machines print the visors, which will be worn by healthcare staff.

Budmen Industries

Budmen Industries is also offering the files for other 3D-printer operators to manufacture the visors, and is asking them to register in order to connect the producers to a healthcare facility in need.

Budmen Industries

Budmen told Syracuse.com that the cost works out to about $US8 per shield.

Budmen Industries

“It just sort of felt right to us to do what we could to help the situation,” Budmen told Syracuse.com

Budmen Industries

Read the full story at Syracuse.com.

See how they’re printed here:

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