We’re delighted to share that our Coventry factory is helping produce parts for life-saving Personal Protective Equipment (PPE).
Following a call for help from a school in Hertfordshire, we have joined forces with schools nationwide in the battle against COVID-19 by utilising our production facilities and expertise to produce parts needed for life-saving face shields used by frontline NHS and critical key workers. Keen to help, our teams worked round the clock to successfully adapt our materials and machinery to create parts for essential PPE for use throughout the UK.
The schools’ original 3D printed design consisted of a headband made from three separate components, which was then clipped to a clear acetate visor. As the headband is the most complex and time-consuming component of a protective face shield, we stepped in to help improve the efficiency and speed of production. Our dedicated team of technical, CAD and cutting specialists modified the design of the headband, adapting it to reduce the components and ensure it was more secure and structurally sound as well as faster and more efficient to assemble.
Gary Wilson, Head of Technical at Amtico, explains further:
“We used a material modified from the 1mm wear layer used in our Signature LVT product, which is chemically inert and made with phthalate-free plasticiser. This is extremely flexible, durable and it is easy to cut very precisely, so we were able to produce the headband with tolerances that allow a secure, comfortable fit.”
Once prototype headbands had been produced, they were then sent to the Merchant Taylors’ School in Hertfordshire, where they were assembled with their face shields. The final samples were then taken to Watford General Hospital to show an ICU surgeon, who approved the design and immediately placed an order for 2,000 units. These were then produced by Amtico, free of charge, within seven hours of NHS approval.
A further 12,000 parts have been ordered to create face shields for many hospitals throughout North and West London, including Royal Free London, Chelsea & Westminster, Northwick Park and Mount Vernon, as well as Watford General.
Commenting on producing the PPE face shields, Jonathan Duck, CEO at Amtico, said:
“I’m proud of the way Amtico, as a company, rises to new challenges. Members of our CAD, cutting and material development teams listened carefully to feedback from the NHS to make sure the headband was not only functional but comfortable. We were able to draw on our technical expertise, modifying the design for maximum efficiency, scaling up production and helping local schools support the NHS and other key workers.”
Andrew Duffey, Head of Design, Engineering & Technology at Merchant Taylors’ School, commented:
“Amtico have helped us to greatly increase production, so that we can help even more frontline staff. When we were laser cutting our own frames, we were producing 650 per week; however, since Amtico have been able to supply the PVC frame, we've managed to increase this to 4,500 units per week.”
Capable of producing up to 20,000 headbands for protective face shields per day, Amtico is now working closely with the Design and Technology Association to reach out to schools throughout the UK to help supply more hospitals and NHS Trusts with essential items of PPE. The company is also listed on the Government’s official PPE procurement service. For more information, including how to get involved by requesting headbands or working with us to supply face shields, please contact [email protected]