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To respond to the COVID-19 crisis, the National and Kapodistrian University of Athens (NKUA) coordinated efforts with their researchers and labs for producing face shields using 3D printing. The Athens News Agency (ANA-MPA)reports that “these face shields have been tested by doctors and the staff of the NKUA Medical School university clinics and are used as a supplement and always as an adjunct to the basic essential protection equipment that must be worn, such as specialised masks, gloves, etc.”.
It is estimated that the team could produce 50 face shields per day, along with other Personal Protective Equipment (PPE). The 3-D Printing team are also involved in the design and production of both portable and fixed ventilators for use in intensive care units, air filter adaptors and air system adaptors, full-face snorkeling mask filter adaptors, hard body mouth-nose masks, and other PPE items, according to ANA-MPA.
The estimated number of protective face shields that the team can make is 50 per day. It is expected to produce approximately 2,000 face shields and distribute free of charge in the coming month. To date, 10 groups made up of faculty members, researchers, PhD candidates and students have participated in this voluntary action. A total of 25 3D “printers” (Stereolithography, Fused Deposition Modeling) are being used.
The non-profit organization Design that Matters (DtM; www.designthatmatters.org) launched an open-source, 3D-printable face shield to provide eye protection for healthcare workers and others working on the frontlines. After one week with multiple iterations and piloting with clinicians, it is now the first 3D-printed face shield recommended by the U.S. National Institutes of Health (NIH). Several other organizations, including Siemens, have been looking to 3D printing technologies to provide necessary supplies for front-line medical workers.