In a sign of support for healthcare workers on the front lines of the COVID-19 pandemic with the need for PPE, we are displaying the outline of a heart on the south façade of our Minnesota headquarters.
Like others across the United States and around the world, the move is symbolic and meant to share support for first responders and hope for our communities dealing with the outbreak.
In Paris, the Eiffel Tower has been lit with the word “merci” for healthcare workers; in San Francisco, darkened hotels are lighting hearts on their buildings in solidarity; in communities across the world, people are singing, clapping, and sharing images on social media with #aworldofhearts to show their support.
The lighting is just one small part of our response so far to COVID-19.
Since January, we’ve doubled our global output of N95 respirators to an annual rate of over 1.1 billion per year, or nearly 100 million per month globally. In just the last seven days, we have delivered 10 million N95 respirators to healthcare facilities in states across the United States.
We’ve already put into motion additional investments and actions that will enable us to double our capacity once again, to 2 billion globally within the next 12 months – and some of that additional capacity will begin to come online in the next 60-90 days. In the United States, we expect to be producing N95 respirators at a rate of 50 million per month in June, a 40 percent increase from current levels.
We’re also maximizing the production of a wide range of other products used in the COVID-19 response globally including hand sanitizers, disinfectants, and filtration solutions as the pharmaceutical industry works to find a vaccine to fight the virus.
And, we’ve committed $550,000 in immediate cash assistance funding for local nonprofit organizations serving the most vulnerable populations in communities with 3M operations through 3Mgives.
The heart will be visible on nights through the end of April.