Twenty Maryland companies have received a combined total of more than $1.6 million in a first round of grants for pivoting to or expanding production of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE).
Governor Larry Hogan announced the grants today, through the Maryland COVID-19 Emergency Relief Manufacturing Fund administered by the Maryland Department of Commerce. Companies are receiving grants of up to $100,000 to manufacture everything from face shields, gowns, N-95 masks, and respirator parts to battery packs for ventilators.
“Ramping up our supply of PPE is a critical building block in our state’s recovery plan, and we are taking an all-hands-on-deck approach to secure these resources for our front line workers,” said Governor Hogan. “I want to thank and commend the local businesses who have shifted their operations and increased production to help us save lives and flatten the curve.”
The $5 million program was created in response to a growing demand for items to protect health care and front line workers, including face shields, surgical masks and gowns and gloves, as well as items for hospitals, like thermometers, respirators, and ventilators. The program received more than 200 applications, and additional grants will be made available in the coming weeks.
“We quickly created this program to address an immediate critical need, and our business community has responded in a big way,” said Maryland Commerce Secretary Kelly M. Schulz. “Many of these companies have had to rapidly ramp up production of these items, while others pivoted completely from their normal operations and came up with a creative way they could help, with some adding new jobs in the process.”