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Montreal-based companies ramping up medical supplies to fight COVID-19

COVID-19 companies developing PPE to help health care workers
WATCH: A few Montreal-based companies have decided to do their part in helping health-care workers by developing and delivering personal protective equipment (PPE). As Global's Tim Sargeant reports, they're distributing important equipment such as ventilators and surgical masks to front line workers.
Montreal-based CAE is already a world leader in the manufacturing of aerospace simulators.
The high-tech company trains professionals in civil aviation, military defence and health care.
Now, CAE is using its expertise to build life-saving ventilators.
 
A team of 12 CAE engineers developed a prototype of the respiratory medical machine in response to the Code for Life challenge to develop a ventilator.
“The people literally worked seven days a week around the clock,” Marc St-Hilaire, CAE chief technical officer and vice-president of Technology and Innovation, told Global News via Skype.
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They’re extremely motivated to do something as good as that for the whole country.” 
He says the aerospace manufacturer plans to build 10,000 of these life-saving devices in the next three months and move them from the assembly lines to the front lines of Canadian hospitals where ventilators are in short supply.
It’s CAE’s answer to the battle against COVID-19.
 
“We see people dying around us. I’m going to get emotional, family, friends, colleagues. Everybody feels they need to do something,” he said.
READ MORE: Canada not looking to retaliate after U.S. restricts coronavirus mask exports: Trudeau
 
Pointe-Claire based Medicom is also ramping up production to help protect health-care workers as they treat COVID-19 patients.
 
The manufacturer of surgical masks will be doubling up its output at its plant in Augusta, Ga.
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“We’re building additional shifts, working six days or seven days a week and bringing new equipment,” Guillaume Laverdure, Global chief operating officer of Medicom, told Global News.
 
The federal government plans to procure 157 million masks in the coming months for front-line medical staff across the country.
The national stockpile is depleting and current supplies can’t meet demand.
 
Medicom is promising to delivery tens of millions starting immediately.
 
“We’re doing as much as we can to cope with the demand. but the demand is still higher than the supply,” Laverdure said.
 
Life-saving equipment that is so desperately needed for front line workers who need to stay healthy to save the lives of others.