COLUMBUS — Gov. Mike DeWine announced that Battelle, the Columbus-based company specializing in sterilizing respirator masks for healthcare workers, is partnering with Jobs Ohio to provide hospitals with free mask sanitizing for two weeks.
Battelle Memorial Institute is also partnering with Ohio State University to roll out rapid results testing for COVID-19, which can turn around results in as little as five hours.
Initially the system will process a couple hundred swabs per day, but it will be ramped up to handle more than 1,000 in a given day.
This comes on the heels of the Food and Drug Administration giving Battelle the green light to de-contaminate up to 80,000 masks a day using vaporized hydrogen peroxide.
Dr. Justin Sanchez said this technology will help us in the future long after the pandemic ends.
"There still will be challenges on the biosafety, biosecurity front that both nonprofits like Battelle will have to come together with the commercial world and with government in order to have solutions to make sure this situation never happens again."
The FDA said each mask can be cleaned up to 20 times before it must be destroyed. Sharpie marks on the mask and a computerized system will keep track.
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