GENEDGE Announces Two-year Program Thrives During COVID-19 Crisis Strengthening Virginia Manufacturing

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Martinsville, VA—The GO Virginia Retooling Virginia Manufacturers for Strategic Industries Program is making progress on developing Virginia’s capacity and capability to respond to the demand for Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) and medical supplies to help address the COVID-19 pandemic.  

Now in its first year, the program is helping participating Virginia manufacturers shift operations to emphasize and grow PPE production. An advisory committee is in place to review program execution, investigate other products and industries, assess supply chain risks, and determine additional areas of program focus.

“We are excited about the broad portfolio of PPE companies and products in the program to date. The entrepreneurship and desire for product improvement is truly impressive and demonstrates the Commonwealth’s ability to be a key player in the PPE and medical device industry,” says Cheryl Carrico, Program Manager.  

To date, over 20 companies have applied for the program with most being approved and moving forward with developing their commercialization plans. With a broad range of products such as finished medical grade to personal respirators and masks, raw materials, protective barriers, and sterilization solutions, to testing kits and supplies, the portfolio of companies is diverse and will provide a strong impact within the Commonwealth. As the program nears its target of 25 companies in the first year, companies still interested in pivoting into the PPE/Medical supply industry are encouraged to apply for a remaining spot.

“GO Virginia is committed to helping to grow and diversify the economy. While COVID-19 has presented significant challenges for the economy and the people of Virginia, we also recognize that it presents opportunity for firms with products and ideas that can help mitigate the impact of this pandemic and future public health events. We are encouraged that this effort will help Virginia-based businesses statewide identify sustained, revenue producing opportunities while providing much needed solutions today," said Sara Dunnigan, Deputy Director, GO Virginia and Economic Development at Virginia Department of Housing and Community Development.

For further reading, the following report was made available for public access in December 2020:
• The Virginia Hospital and Healthcare Association (VHHA) published a report detailing the expected demand for PPE as the pandemic progresses.

For more details on the program, a link to the online application, access to the research/reports completed by the program, and webinar recordings detailing PPE production opportunities in Virginia, visit:  https://genedge.org/about-us/programs/go-virginia.

About GENEDGE:
GENEDGE is Virginia’s best public resource to help manufacturing and industry innovate, compete, and grow. GENEDGE delivers consulting-based expertise and technology transfer to over 200 Virginia companies each year and is part of the Manufacturing Extension Partnership National Network™, which provides access to industry-wide services and proven, results-based solutions. For more information, visit www.genedge.org.

About GO Virginia:
GO Virginia is a bipartisan, business-led economic development initiative that is changing the way Virginia’s diverse regions collaborate on economic and workforce development activities. For more information, visit www.govirginia.org.

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MEDIA CONTACT:
Linda Lancaster, GENEDGE, llancaster@genedge.org, (276) 732-4220