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Mass testing for Covid-19 / SARS-CoV-2 infection concept: Several rapid antigen test kits. One kit in the middle showing a positive result (two lines visible)

The industries that have helped tackle the Covid-19 pandemic

It’s fair to say that most, if not all, industries have lent a helping hand during the global pandemic, whether that’s been through keeping their staff employed, donating products, services and expertise, or providing critical personal protective equipment to health organisations dealing with the pandemic on the front line.

It’s shone a light on the flexibility of their resources and what organisations are capable of at time of crisis. Here, we take a look at some of the industries that have stood out. 

Manufacturers

One of the main industries we have seen support the fight against Covid-19 has to be manufacturing.

Many large manufacturing companies have been able to convert their production lines, and use their ingenuity and resources to produce crucial medical research supplies and solutions.

For example, one company created a tool that creates a PCR plate for Covid-19 lab testing using the overmoulding process, while another used its 3D printing technology to rapidly create Covid-19 testing kits.

Other factories changed their assembly lines to produce hand sanitiser, with high-end French perfume maker, LVMH being one such company.

Well-known electronic products manufacturer, Sharp, swapped a portion of its usual production facilities to manufacture 150,000 surgical masks, and retailer Gap Inc worked with their manufacturing team to make masks and provide storage for emergency response supplies.

Financial services industry 

A number of financial and insurance companies also came out to show their support for customers who were having difficulties as a result of the pandemic.

Prudential, for example, decided to waive rent for some of its retail tenants in Newark and donated $250,000 to a small business grant fund and gave away $600,000 to a Covid-19 community fund.

Similarly, banking giant, Bank of America made a number of different offerings to customers facing financially challenging times.

For example, refunding overdraft fees, suspending evictions and repossessions, deferring mortgage payments and providing refunds on late payment fees. 

Tech industry 

The tech industry also showed up during the pandemic.

Geographical information system software specialists, Esri supported public health organisations by offering free access to its GIS and mapping software to ensure people were up-to-date on the spread of the virus in close to real time.

In addition, while all schools had directed pupils to home learning, audio storytelling company, Audible, offered free books for children and older students via its own streaming service, with the intention of ‘keeping their minds engaged while daily routines are disrupted during these unprecedented times’, according to the company.

Logitech also helped out with tech education by offering teachers free webcams and headsets while teaching remotely.

Pharmaceutical companies 

All eyes were on the pharmaceutical companies at the start of the pandemic as the world eagerly awaited a response to Covid-19.

Many of the globe’s biggest pharmaceutical companies joined forces to find a vaccine as soon as possible.

Pfizer was the first to get emergency use authorisation from the FDA (Food and Drug Administration) developing its vaccine in under one year.

The UK became the first to use the Oxford University AstraZeneca vaccine with around 50 million administered since its rollout.

Pharmaceutical businesses are continuing to upscale global supply as the effects of the pandemic continue.

According to ABPI (the Association of the British Pharmaceutical Industry) pharmaceutical companies including Johnson& Johnson, Novavax and Moderna are working with their partners to increase global supply of approved vaccines, and are working to find more, while continuing the search for more treatments. 

Retail

Not only did essential retail workers provide a vital service in supermarkets but they also rose to the challenge in other ways.

Footwear and apparel retailer, Allbirds Inc. made a donation of $500,000 worth of footwear to healthcare workers, later offering shoppers the opportunity to donate as well.

The donation was to demonstrate their appreciation to the medical community for their hard work in tackling Covid-19.

Countless others joined too with outdoor clothing online retailer Backcountry donating tens of thousands of dollars to homeless charities in both New York City and Salt Lake City, and global fashion house Coach contributed $4 million to relief charities and products to health care workers worth over $3.5 million.

Shoe brand, Crocs also gave 10,000 pairs of shoes away to medical workers. 

And there’s more...

Manufacturing, financial, tech, pharmaceutical and retail industries are not the only ones to provide support during the pandemic.

In the UK, food delivery company, Deliveroo donated 500,000 free meals to NHS staff, music streaming service Spotify helped musician and artists struggling in the pandemic with its Music Relief Fund, and GalaBingo gave the over 65s free games during lockdown with two free bingo sessions every day.

Nolan Recruitment gave free helpful advice for Job searches dealing with online video interviewing to preparing their CV’s throughout the post lockdown. 

The support provided by industries to tackle the effects of Covid-19 has been diverse, with companies demonstrating their impressive resources, innovation and creativity in a challenging era.

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