CHICAGO – The first VOCSN V+Pro critical care ventilators produced by General Motors and Ventec Life Systems in Kokomo, Indiana are being delivered by UPS to Franciscan Health Olympia Fields in Olympia Fields, Illinois and Weiss Memorial Hospital in Chicago at the direction of the Federal Emergency Management Agency. The milestone shipments are putting important tools in the hands of frontline medical professionals treating patients seriously ill with COVID-19.
Franciscan Health Olympia Fields received their shipment early Friday morning and Weiss Memorial will receive theirs Friday afternoon. A third shipment from GM-Kokomo will be delivered by UPS to FEMA at the Gary/Chicago International Airport on Saturday for distribution to other locations where the need is greatest.
The deliveries are the culmination of a partnership between GM and Ventec Life Systems that began with a phone call exactly one month ago. Since then, the combined teams have sourced thousands of parts, transformed GM’s advanced electronics facility in Kokomo for medical device production, contracted with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services to provide 30,000 ventilators by the end of August and launched mass production. More than 1,000 men and women from the Kokomo community will be building ventilators.
“The passion and commitment that people at GM, Ventec and our suppliers have put into this work is inspiring, and we are all humbled to support the heroic efforts of medical professionals in Chicagoland and across the world who are fighting to save lives and turn the tide of the pandemic,” said GM Chairman and CEO Mary Barra.
Said White House Assistant to the President Dr. Peter Navarro: “Not only has GM/Ventec and the UAW set a new Trump Time standard in rapid industrial mobilization – just weeks from site construction to ventilator production – the GM/Ventec ventilators are now rolling off the line, and on the wings and tires of Big Brown-UPS. And through the seamless coordination of FEMA, these lifesaving devices are equally rapidly being delivered to hospitals in need in Chicago and Gary. A patriotic White House salute to the full power of private enterprise joining hands with the full force of the federal government to fight the invisible enemy!”
“Patients deserve access to the best technology to keep them in the fight as their bodies combat the virus,” said Ventec Life Systems CEO Chris Kiple. “Critical care ventilators deliver precise airflow to protect the lungs, include accurate monitors to assess patient well-being, and most importantly, they include advanced controls that help respiratory therapists and physicians wean patients off ventilators as fast as possible.”
“UPS always stands ready to meet the urgent needs of the American people, and we are proud to be selected to make this historic delivery,” said UPS Chairman and CEO David Abney. “This monumental effort is a testament to the unbridled ingenuity and innovation of American companies. In the words of our founder, determined people working together can accomplish anything; and GM, Ventec and UPS have accomplished this together with the speed, quality and exacting precision that the world expects from America’s private sector.”
“For a community hospital that was already struggling with budgetary constraints prior to this crisis, these ventilators are a much-needed infusion of critical resources to care for our patients, which includes a significant elderly population," said Mary Shehan, CEO of Weiss Memorial Hospital. “We are extremely grateful for the support and to all those who are rallying to ensure that our frontline caregivers have the necessary supplies to care for our patients. We need all the help we can get now to rise to this unprecedented challenge.”
“We have healthcare heroes who are on the front lines in this pandemic and we’re grateful to know there is support to attain more of the essential resources they need to care for the most critically ill patients,” said Allan M. Spooner, president and CEO of Franciscan Health Olympia Fields. “Every single one of these ventilators will make a difference in the lives of critical COVID-19 patients and our other patients with acute respiratory illness. We are grateful and inspired by the ingenuity and dedication of everyone behind this truly lifesaving gift.”
Photos and video of the first shipments as well as additional information about the historic partnership between General Motors and Ventec Life Systems can be found at www.VentecGM.com.
General Motors (NYSE:GM) is a global company committed to delivering safer, better and more sustainable ways for people to get around. General Motors, its subsidiaries and its joint venture entities sell vehicles under the Chevrolet, Buick, GMC, Cadillac, Holden, Baojun and Wuling brands. More information on the company and its subsidiaries, including OnStar, a global leader in vehicle safety and security services, and Maven, its personal mobility brand, can be found at http://www.gm.com.
Ventec Life Systems is redefining respiratory care to improve patient outcomes and reduce caregiver challenges from the hospital to home. Ventec's leading product, VOCSN, is the first and only Multi-Function Ventilator that seamlessly integrates five devices - a critical care Ventilator, 6 L/min equivalent Oxygen concentrator, touch button Cough assist, hospital grade Suction, and a high-performance Nebulizer - into one integrated respiratory system that is lightweight and mobile. VOCSN is fully customizable to meet patient needs for pediatric and adult patients. Learn more at VentecLife.com and connect with Ventec on Facebook, LinkedIn, YouTube, Twitter, and Instagram.
UPS (NYSE: UPS) is a global leader in logistics, offering a broad range of solutions including transporting packages and freight; facilitating international trade, and deploying advanced technology to more efficiently manage the world of business. Headquartered in Atlanta, UPS serves more than 220 countries and territories worldwide. UPS was awarded America’s Best Customer Service company for Shipping and Delivery services by Newsweek magazine; Forbes Most Valuable Brand in Transportation; and top rankings on the JUST 100 list for social responsibility, the Dow Jones Sustainability World Index, and the Harris Poll Reputation Quotient, among other prestigious rankings and awards. The company can be found on the web at ups.com or pressroom.ups.com and its corporate blog can be found at ups.com/longitudes The company’s sustainability eNewsletter, UPS Horizons, can be found at ups.com/sustainabilitynewsletter. To get UPS news direct, follow @UPS_News on Twitter. To ship with UPS, visit ups.com/ship.