Tim Cook
Tim Cook, Chief executive officer of Apple Inc. (Credit: screenshot)

Apple announced its plans to begin producing one million face shields a week for medical workers on the frontlines of the coronavirus pandemic.

Chief executive Tim Cook explained in a video posted to Twitter Sunday that the tech giant had already sourced 20 million surgical masks from around the world to help address a current global shortage.

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Oprah Apple thegrio.com
Apple Inc. CEO Tim Cook and Oprah Winfrey stand onstage during a company product launch event at the Steve Jobs Theater at Apple Park (Photo by Michael Short/Getty Images)

In addition to those efforts, Apple has also designed its own transparent protective face shield which is being mass-produced at its factories in the US and China.

“Apple is dedicated to supporting the worldwide response to COVID-19,” read the caption of the post. “We’ve now sourced over 20M masks through our supply chain. Our design, engineering, operations and packaging teams are also working with suppliers to design, produce and ship face shields for medical workers.”

“We plan to ship over one million by the end of this week,” elaborated Cook in the clip, also noting that the first round of distribution will be focused on the United States, but the company hopes to “quickly expand distribution” to other nations.

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Apple is just the latest of several other global firms that have modified their production lines to help meet the urgent demand for protective gear, including Italian luxury brand Prada.

Last month, President Donald Trump issued a federal order mandating that auto giant General Motors join the efforts to manufacture ventilators. There was a shortage of the hospital equipment, crucial for treating critical COVID-19 cases and leads to avoidable fatalities.