As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to spread, Tesla's CEO is doing what he can to help.
Elon Musk, CEO of Tesla Inc. and SpaceX, donated more than a thousand ventilators on Monday to help with the US response to the ongoing outbreak of the novel coronavirus COVID-19. The ventilators, 1,255 in all, were shipped from China to Los Angeles as Musk makes good on his promise to do all he can to help the US effort at containment and treatment.
It's a very different tone to the one Mr. Musk initially had with regard to the novel coronavirus outbreak. After six counties in the Bay Area implemented a shelter-in-place order to keep non-essential workers at home, Tesla at first planned to ignore the order and keep a full staff at its Fremont factory to continue production ramp-up on the Tesla Model Y.
The EV manufacturer eventually relented and cut its staff.
And Musk himself had been critical in the past of the US's response to the coronavirus outbreak, calling the panic "dumb" on Twitter before comparing the lethality of COVID-19 to that of car crashes.
But Musk nevertheless stepped up and organized the delivery of the ventilators from China, which currently has an oversupply of the devices. Ventilators are crucial in fighting the outbreak of the novel coronavirus as the disease primarily affects the lungs, in some cases causing acute respiratory distress that can be fatal.
Those ventilators are just the latest move Musk has made to help give healthcare providers the tools they need to treat the COVID-19 outbreak, after Tesla donated some 50,000 N95 masks in the Seattle area.
And Tesla hasn't ruled out using its manufacturing firepower to produce additional ventilators for healthcare providers. Medtronic, which produced many of the ventilators Elon Musk had shipped from China, recently stated that it has had discussions with Musk and Tesla about potential solutions for healthcare facilities.
Like Tesla, Ford, General Motors, and Fiat Chrysler Automobiles have all started taking steps to help contribute to ventilator and mask supplies in the US.