COVID-19, Healthcare, Medical, Medicine, Manufacturing, Tampa Bay

AMRoC Fab Lab's initiative connects PPE-makers and healthcare providers

The Problem

PPE is in high-demand. But how can folks creating PPE at home connect to the healthcare professionals who need it now?

The Solution

AMRoC Fab Lab’s Consolidated for COVID initiative is Tampa Bay’s solution for connecting makers and healthcare workers. 

Consolidated for COVID is turning the PPE scramble into a streamlined process. Healthcare workers and makers add their information and get connected to others who have they need or need what they have. 

The site includes everything from open-source face-mask templates for 3D printing to how-to guides on sterilizing equipment once it’s been created. There are also links to at-home learning resources for children. A list of COVID-combatting hackathons and projects is always growing.

Visitors can also donate to the Face Shield Printing Project and related efforts. It’s a great way for those without a 3D printer to involve themselves in an awesome effort.

AMRoC Fab Labs is a program under the nonprofit Foundation for Community Driven Innovation. Its mission is to address the skills gap that, for 47% of area manufacturers, has stunted their companies’ growth. The public Fab Lab builds community capacity by empowering participants with resiliency, self-reliance, and creative self-expression.

Look for AMRoC Fab Lab’s in the forthcoming INNOVATE® Tampa Bay, Vol. 3.

The Takeaway

Through the chaos of COVID-19, it’s satisfying to see that sometimes the solution is in our hands. Sometimes, there’s something concrete and helpful that we can do right now. Initiatives like Consolidated for COVID combat people’s feelings of helplessness while also protecting those fighting on the medical frontlines.

AMRoC’s initiative also highlights the importance of having a public maker space in a city. Maker spaces have the potential to build up the economy by upskilling potential employees to meet the needs of the manufacturing industry, which is once more on the rise and responsible for half of the US’s exports.

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