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US aerospace and defence company Boeing has delivered the initial shipment of 2,300 reusable 3D-printed face shields to support efforts to curb the spread of coronavirus (Covid-19).

The move is part of the company’s larger initiative to leverage company and employee resources to assist with Covid-19 recovery and relief efforts.

Designed for healthcare professionals, the first set of face shields have been accepted by the US Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). 

The shields will be delivered by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to the Kay Bailey Hutchison Convention Centre in Dallas, Texas.

The centre has been set up to serve as an alternate care site for Covid-19 patients.

Boeing president and CEO David Calhoun said: “Boeing is proud to stand alongside many other great American companies in the fight against Covid-19, and we are dedicated to supporting our local communities, especially our frontline healthcare professionals, during this unprecedented time.

“History has proven that Boeing is a company that rises to the toughest challenges with people who are second to none. Today, we continue that tradition, and we stand ready to assist the federal government’s response to this global pandemic.”

Boeing is using additive manufacturing machines to manufacture face shields at various sites in the US. The company will be ramping up its production by increasing the numbers to thousands more face shields every week.

Boeing has so far donated tens of thousands of units of personal protective equipment including face masks, goggles, gloves, safety glasses and protective bodysuits.

The clear film and the adjustable headband elastic for the face shield were supplied by Solvay and Trelleborg Sealing Solutions, respectively.

Argon ST and Aurora Flight Sciences are taking part in this project. Boeing is also providing airlift support to help deliver the supplies.

Earlier this month, Boeing extended the temporary suspension of its operations at Puget Sound area and Moses Lake sites in the US until further notice.

Confirmed cases of coronavirus stood at 1,850,527 globally, while death toll reached 114,245.