BOSTON (CBS) – Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker asked local manufacturing companies to continue shifting their focus to making personal protective equipment (PPE) during the coronavirus pandemic. Baker said hundreds of companies have already reached out, with many getting to work to make critical gear.

Baker said the state is making about $10 million available in grants to help companies produce PPE. About 260 companies have reached out to the state willing to help, Baker said.

“Some companies are already making face shields, test swabs, and medical gowns,” Baker said.

One of the companies was represented at Baker’s Monday press conference. Brenna Schneider, founder of Lawrence-based 99Degrees, said the company will be producing one million protective gowns in the coming weeks.

Schneider said it normally takes 6-18 months to develop new products. In this case, it took about three weeks.

Companies interested in producing supplies during the coronavirus crisis can visit the Massachusetts Technology Collaborative website.


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