APPLETON, Wis. (WBAY) -- A national manufacturing business focused on supporting the construction industry and creating sustainable, renewable energy solutions, Excellerate Manufacturing is one of many manufacturers across the country now switching gears in response to COVID-19.
"We started to get a few calls from some of our partners whether it be customer or vendor partners last week knowing what we've kind of manufactured in the past with some of the conatiner solutions and just asked, 'What could you guys do? Do you think there's anything you guys could do to support that?'" said Tom Clark, chief experience officer with Excellerate Manufacturing.
The answer to those questions: emergency deployable medical units.
"We're hoping to make in the hundreds here over the course of the next eight to ten weeks or however long they're needed," said Clark.
The units will be made at the Appleton facility among others in the United States.
Workers spend two weeks outfitting each shipping container with walls, insulation, and electricity. The units are fireproofed before they get delivered to hospitals and clinics across the country in need of some extra space.
"We're hearing stories now of people being triaged and set in parking structures that go into hospitals and those things," said Clark. "So, this is a solution to be able to be in a cleaner environment and a more comfortable environment."
Production on the first emergency deployable medical unit at Excellerate Manufacturing started on Wednesday.
Clark says the business has talked to interested healthcare organizations about potential orders.
"We want to keep our employees working, and there are some companies that we work for that are affected, and that's going to affect our employees," said Clark. "This is an opportunity to keep our employees working, but I think the primary reason is how can we turn something positive out of this situation, and how can we have a positive impact?"
The cost of each unit depends on the modifications, but Clark estimates a six to eight piece set to be anywhere from $600,000 to $900,000 dollars with options to buy or lease.