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Corona pandemic: Companies adapt production to support the needs of health care

1 April 2020
As the coronavirus (COVID-19) causes widespread impacts to communities and businesses across the world, several Swedish life science companies have stepped up and shifted production to meet demand for solutions that can help fight the virus.

Gothenburg’s Getinge is one of the companies that is trying to meet the demand from health care providers around the world. The firm produces life-saving ventilators for patients in intensive care and is aiming to temporarily increase its production of ventilators in Sweden by 60 per cent.

“To meet the increased demand for ventilators we are adding a second production shift in our production facility,” said Elin Frostehav, Vice President Critical Care at Getinge, in a recent press release. 

In addition, around 50 people from Swedish truck maker Scania, who have been temporarily laid off, are also working for Getinge to help it reach the goal. The medtech company is also considering hiring additional personnel.

The produced ventilators will be shipped globally, based on current customer demands.

“Our teams are doing their outmost every day to support our customers help saving lives,” said Elin Frostehav in the press release.


“We take this very seriously”

Another company that has seen an increase in demand for its products is Breas Medical in Gothenburg. The company also makes ventilators that can help save lives in the fight against COVID-19. During recent weeks it has increased its production capacity by hiring additional staff and expanding production hours.

The company has 200 staff globally and around 80 people at its head office in Mölnlycke, Gothenburg.

In an interview with Swedish daily Svenska Dagbladet, Sebastian Mommers, head of Breas Medical in Sweden, said that demand for its ventilators has increased, particularly in the UK, Italy, Spain, USA and China, but also in Sweden.  

“We see that a lot is happening in all countries and it’s a very hectic time for us. We take this very seriously and are trying to help our customers in health care, so that they can help the patients,” he told the newspaper.


Essity to produce face masks

Swedish hygiene products maker Essity is shifting its production, as hospitals report shortages of protective equipment. It will soon start making facemasks and these will be prioritised for health care providers.

Other Gothenburg based companies with solutions that can help in the fight against the coronavirus are also seeing an increase in demand. Just a few of the firms include: TATAA Biocenter, which was among the first companies in Europe to offer a test for COVID-19 (SARS-CoV-2); Cuviva, which has a home monitoring solution for elderly people; and Visiba Care, which has a solution for digital health consultations.

On 3-6 April, an official Covid-19 hackathon is being held in Sweden. The initiative is arranged by the Swedish government and has three focus areas: saving lives, saving communities and saving businesses. To learn more, visit the initiatives website: Hack the crisis 


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