Apple builds 1 million face shields a week for medical workers

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Apple CEO Tim Cook shows off a face shield Apple is making for medical workers.
CEO Tim Cook shows off a face shield Apple is making for medical workers.
Photo: Ed Hardy/Cult of Mac

Apple CEO Tim Cook said Sunday that the company is building face shields for medical workers. These are already being distributed in the US, and the plan is to make a million of them a week to be sent to around the world.

In addition, Cook revealed the company has sourced, but not yet donated, over 20 million face masks. The head of Apple said “We’re working continuously and closely with governments at all levels to ensure these are donated to places of greatest need.”

Cook’s comments came in a Twitter video posted Sunday afternoon.

Producing face shields for medical workers

Apple’s efforts to help during the COVID-19 pandemic now include making face shields to be donated to hospitals. “We’ve launched a company-wide effort, bringing together product designers, engineering operations and packaging teams, and our suppliers to design produce and ship face shields for health workers,” Cook said on Sunday.

These are already in production, with materials and manufacturing in the US and China. The plan is to make a million of these a week.

The first shipment went to Kaiser hospital facilities in the Santa Clara Valley last week. “The feedback from doctors was very positive,” said the Apple CEO.

“We are closely coordinating with medical professionals and government officials across the US to get these to where they’re needed most urgently,” Cook noted. And the plan is to quickly expand distribution of these face shields to other countries.

Apple donates millions more face masks

The Apple CEO talked on March 25 about his company’s efforts to procure millions of face masks. At that time, Cook said Apple was able to get 10 million masks for the US and “millions more” for Europe, but didn’t get more specific.

On Sunday, he said “The number of masks we’ve been able to source through our supply chain has risen to over 20 million around the world. This is a truly global effort.”