Tesla Inc Chief Executive Elon Musk said on Tuesday the company has extra FDA-approved ventilators that can be shipped free of cost to hospitals within regions where the electric carmaker delivers.
"Device & shipping cost are free. The only requirement is that the vents are needed immediately for patients, not stored in a warehouse. Please me or @Tesla know," Musk said in a tweet.
Tesla did not immediately respond to a request for comment on how many ventilators it has to offer, or how the company will prioritize requests.
Governments across the globe have appealed to automakers and aerospace companies help procure or make ventilators and other medical equipment amid a fast-spreading coronavirus outbreak, which has infected more than 777,000 people globally and killed over 37,500.
In the United States, states hard hit by the pandemic have pleaded with the Trump administration and manufacturers to speed up production of ventilators to cope with a surge in patients.
Frequently Asked Questions
A vaccine works by mimicking a natural infection. A vaccine not only induces immune response to protect people from any future COVID-19 infection, but also helps quickly build herd immunity to put an end to the pandemic. Herd immunity occurs when a sufficient percentage of a population becomes immune to a disease, making the spread of disease from person to person unlikely. The good news is that SARS-CoV-2 virus has been fairly stable, which increases the viability of a vaccine.
There are broadly four types of vaccine — one, a vaccine based on the whole virus (this could be either inactivated, or an attenuated [weakened] virus vaccine); two, a non-replicating viral vector vaccine that uses a benign virus as vector that carries the antigen of SARS-CoV; three, nucleic-acid vaccines that have genetic material like DNA and RNA of antigens like spike protein given to a person, helping human cells decode genetic material and produce the vaccine; and four, protein subunit vaccine wherein the recombinant proteins of SARS-COV-2 along with an adjuvant (booster) is given as a vaccine.
Vaccine development is a long, complex process. Unlike drugs that are given to people with a diseased, vaccines are given to healthy people and also vulnerable sections such as children, pregnant women and the elderly. So rigorous tests are compulsory. History says that the fastest time it took to develop a vaccine is five years, but it usually takes double or sometimes triple that time.