Tim Cook: Apple will donate 10 million medical masks to US healthcare workers

Polycount

TS Evangelist
Staff member

This news was announced on Twitter by Apple CEO Tim Cook. The total amount of donated masks was initially going to be much lower -- around two million in total, according to information from US Vice President Mike Pence. However, it seems Apple decided to up that figure after realizing just how high the demand for such supplies is. Notably, the company will also be donating a few million more masks to the hardest-hit regions of Europe.

There could be any number of reasons for Apple's donation, but no matter what, this gift will certainly be appreciated by medical professionals. As Apple itself says, these people are nothing short of "heroes" working on the "front lines" of a devastating battle -- every day, they risk their own health (and possibly that of their families) to treat those who have been struck with Covid-19 (and any number of other ailments).

Though not foolproof by any means, the medical masks (the once widely-available "N95" respirators) can provide some level of protection against Covid-19-laden discharge droplets ejected from the mouth or nose when worn properly. Perhaps more importantly, they can also help the sick avoid spreading their illness to others.

We don't know exactly how Apple is procuring these masks, but in this case, the end result is all that matters. Hopefully, these masks will make a small but meaningful difference in the lives of millions of healthcare pros, but only time will tell.

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Skjorn

TS Guru
So where are they going to get them from when hospitals can't even get them?
Yeah I kinda look at the companies "donating" masks as a publicity stunt more than anything. Jack Ma did it too.

Is Apple manufacturing masks to donate? No. They are just footing the bill and paying 3M to make them. Even in global crisis gotta pay up or die cause 3M ain't making them for YOU, they make em for the CASH.
 

Uncle Al

TS Evangelist
So where are they going to get them from when hospitals can't even get them?
While I can't absolutely confirm it, one of my friends that used to work for them said they stockpiled quite a few things very similar to the old Civil Defense days, wanting to make sure that Apple could continue to operate in a crises ..... shows somebody out there was actually thinking .... what a shame our own government stopped doing that decades ago!
 
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Capaill

TS Evangelist
It's not clear whether the masks are the surgical masks or the N95 respirator masks. I would assume the masks are coming from China. Apparently, not only has China bought up most of the world's stockpiles of masks during January / February but they have also converted many factories (including 3M) to the production of masks exclusively for the Chinese market.
By the end of February, China was producing 115 million disposable surgical masks per day! But only 1.6 million N95 masks, because they require a special fabric that is in short supply.
Source: https://www.nytimes.com/2020/03/13/business/masks-china-coronavirus.html

Now that China appears to have gotten the virus under control domestically, they have started to donate and export their masks to the international market.

I have a question: What happens to all the medical masks, N95 masks, surgical gloves and test kits after they are disposed of? Especially as they are now being produced in massive quantities and are largely not recyclable or biodegradable and are medical waste. Masks are typically discarded after a day, gloves are binned after a few minutes in hospitals, garages and shops, while test kits are single use only.
 

mailpup

TS Special Forces
I have a question: What happens to all the medical masks, N95 masks, surgical gloves and test kits after they are disposed of? Especially as they are now being produced in massive quantities and are largely not recyclable or biodegradable and are medical waste. Masks are typically discarded after a day, gloves are binned after a few minutes in hospitals, garages and shops, while test kits are single use only.
I'm guessing most of it is incinerated in kilns and incinerators designed for this type of biohazard waste disposal.
 

wiyosaya

TS Evangelist
While I applaud Cook for realizing that somewhere deep inside of himself their is a sense of social conscience, IMO, crApple can afford to give quite a bit more than this.
 
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While I applaud Cook for realizing that somewhere deep inside of himself their is a sense of social conscience, IMO, crApple can afford to give quite a bit more than this.
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Something I read somewhere on cost to produce masks was 75 cents a piece. $7.5 million has to be explained to the shareholder. Now if we heard it wrong and he's donating that out of pocket change.....