Ford Motor Company geared up one of their production lines into overdrive so they can crank out 500 crucially needed medical ventilators, each and every day, starting Monday. Sandoz will be coughing up 30 million doses of hydroxychloroquine sulfate and Johnson & Johnson is making sure they have everything in place to bottle “more than 1 billion doses of a vaccine,” as soon as one passes testing.
Mass production to ease shortages
The surprise Covid-19 attack blasted through supplies of crucially needed medical supplies, equipment and protective gear just when they’re needed the most. The private sector is doing everything they can to ease the shortages. Some of the most desperately needed pieces of equipment are the ventilators used to help patients with severe pneumonia. Ford teamed up with General Electric to build more by the thousands.
Starting Monday, a plant in Michigan will start the high tech equipment rolling down the line at the rate of 500 per day. After 100 days of production 50,000 of the ventilators will be in operation. Then, they plan to crank out 30,000 more every month as long as needed.
Ford borrowed the “simplified ventilator design” from GE Healthcare, who licensed it originally from Florida’s Airon Corp. It’s been totally approved by the Food and Drug Administration. One of its best features is that it “can meet the needs of most COVID-19 patients and relies on air pressure without the need for electricity.”
Sandoz drops 30 million doses on America
Drug maker Sandoz donated 30 million doses of hydroxychloroquine sulfate from their Novartis generics and biosimilars division to the Department of Health and Human Services. Bayer put another million doses of chloroquine phosphate in the mail.
It’s intended “for possible use in treating patients hospitalized with COVID-19 or for use in clinical trials.” Other companies are setting up their production lines to donate extra supplies and for the commercial market.
The Food and Drug Administration approved emergency use of the products donated to the Strategic National Stockpile. It will “be distributed and prescribed by doctors to hospitalized teen and adult patients with COVID-19, as appropriate, when a clinical trial is not available or feasible.”
Johnson & Johnson get ready to vaccinate
The Administration already worked out deals with Johnson & Johnson and Moderna. They’re also working with at least two more companies to prepare vaccine production ahead of time. Massive quantities are expected to be needed but for now, there isn’t anything to produce.
Scientists are still tailoring a vaccine specifically for Covid-19 and it isn’t expected to be ready “until at least 2021.” J&J signed a deal to pump out a billion doses at a dollar a pop. They signed a contract for $1 billion on Monday.
America’s Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority is a part of the Department of Health and Human Services. BARDA plans to “support five or six experimental vaccine candidates, with the hopes of having two or three successful ones.”
According to J&J Chief Scientific Officer Dr. Paul Stoffels, they have to get the factory set up now, way before a vaccine is ready. “That is the only option for us to get it on time.”