During the pandemic, the U.S. has been scrambling to secure enough face masks, goggles, plastic gowns, and other personal protective equipment (PPE) to keep frontline workers safe. This gear creates barriers between individuals and prevents exposure to droplets that could carry the virus between people, making it essential for healthcare professionals who come in close contact with COVID-19 patients.
PPE shortages have been severe since the pandemic started with governments competing for items their healthcare workers need amid disrupted manufacturing and supply chains. Typically, China produces more than half the world’s face mask supply, but the country largely ceased exporting these items when the pandemic hit.
Getting protective supplies to those who need them and ensuring PPE inventory quantities are sufficient to curb the spread of the virus are both critical to public health. All of this has led some U.S. manufacturing companies to step up and pivot their business in order to help the greater good.
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