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NEW BRITAIN, CT – March 30, 2020 – OKAY Industries, a contract manufacturer that engineers components and subassemblies for original equipment manufacturers in the medical device and industrial markets, has announced that it is donating engineering, manufacturing and supply chain development support services to assist in the production of face shields. The PPE (personal protective equipment) will be distributed to Hartford Healthcare and other local hospitals to help protect staff and prevent the transmission of COVID-19. The company has gathered support from local organizations and is collaborating with the Community Foundation of Greater New Britain as well as the Consolidated School District of New Britain in the effort.
“As a manufacturer of medical components and assemblies, our expertise and capabilities are a logical fit to assist in this challenge,” said Jason Howey, President and CEO of OKAY Industries, Inc. “However, it is through the collaboration of multiple organizations, the funding of generous donors to purchase materials, and with the support of Hartford Healthcare, that we are able to do this. I thank my team and the community for coming together to support healthcare professionals in this critical time.”
OKAY Industries is working to design production lines, plan manufacturing processes, create prototypes, as well as procure materials. The lines will be built at New Britain High School, and face shields will be assembled by a team of volunteers. OKAY Industries will also provide training to volunteers to ensure that face shields are assembled correctly, that cleanliness standards are maintained, and that safe distances are complied with for personnel.
Currently OKAY Industries staff is working on the project from the company’s locations in New Britain, CT and Berlin, CT, and expects to deliver initial prototypes to HHC tomorrow evening. After HHC approval, the company will be able to order needed supplies, and plans to be in full-scale production in about a week. It is expected that between 10,000 and 15,000 shields will be produced, however, as other local hospitals and healthcare organizations submit requests, volumes may increase.
“For more than 100 years our company has been part of the Connecticut community, and like us, so many manufacturers are partnering to fight the COVID-19 virus right now,” continued Howey. “Impact, Teamwork and Integrity are all core values in the way we do business, and in these unprecedented times, I am so proud of my team for putting those values in action and for their efforts on this project.”
OKAY Industries is headquartered at 200 Ellis Street, New Britain, CT, and has additional locations at 245 New Park Drive, Berlin, CT and in Montecillos, Alajuela, Costa Rica. As a critical manufacturer producing parts for essential applications, OKAY Industries has received permission from Connecticut Governor Ned Lamont to remain open during the coronavirus outbreak. The company employs a workforce of approximately 350 individuals, and is donating its services in this effort.