ITHACA, N.Y. (WSYR-TV) — Ithaca-based Incodema has come up with a new way to try and help increase the number of face shields available for healthcare workers and others on the frontline.
The company has developed a design for a sanitizable face shield that can be used multiple times.
They are making these plans available as a free, open-source design for manufacturers anywhere available on their website.
Incodema first sprung into action after getting a call from Cayuga Medical System, also based in Ithaca, a few weeks ago.
The healthcare provider was having a great deal of trouble, like many, finding face shields.
“So the Incodema team put their heads together here to see what we could do to assist with that. So they came up with a design using stainless steel that could be completely sanitized and sterilized,” says Incodema President Illa Burbank.
The company is used to turning out product fast specializing in quick turn precision cutting and forming manufacturing using sheet metal.
Their usual customers are companies looking for prototypes made in a hurry.
The team looked at the face shields on the market now and found many are only able to be used once, and Burbank says the 3D printed ones usually don’t hold up much beyond two or three sanitations because the plastic gets brittle.
She tells NewsChannel 9, “The nice thing about this is that both the band and the plastic shield are removable and you can separately sterilize them and reuse them over and over, so you don’t have to go back out and continuously look for new face shields.”
Incodema found out last week Cayuga Medical was sending 2 busloads of medical personnel down to NYC to assist with COVID care. So, some of the people on the second shift at Incodema offered to make face shields for them.
They made 50 shields and delivered them to the buses just before they left.
Burbank says, “Incodema team has been really excited to work on this project. It really feels good to the team to be able to help out with this pandemic using the skills that they have to help out with this face shield.”