Using 3D Printing to Support Essential Workers

When a global pandemic strikes, it is important for everyone to do their part. At iNSPIRE Q, we recognized the resources that we had and used them in the fight against COVID-19. With our 3D printer, we produced Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)—specifically, face shields—and donated them to facilities that needed them. As a result, we delivered 278 face shields to 4 destinations in the northwestern suburbs of Chicago. This included hospitals, a nursing home, and a PPE gathering and distribution organization.

Our 3D Project Modeler, Allen Yau, uses a 3D printer to produce face shields for essential workers during COVID-19.

How it Started

When COVID-19 hit in March of 2020, we immediately noticed the impact it had on our communities. Critical supplies were dwindling, and many essential workers did not have face shields or continued to reuse the same shields as they worked tirelessly to fight the virus. Led by our 3D Product Modelers Allen Yau and Andrea Ware, our team at iNSPIRE Q swiftly leaped to action.

With our goal set, we followed the FDA-approved model from the National Institutes of Health’s 3D database to produce the face shields. Adhering to the CDC’s guidelines, we cleaned print supports, disinfected, assembled, and carefully packed the face shields. All members of the iNSPIRE Q team always took preventative measures during production by wearing face masks and latex-free gloves.

An essential worker from AMITA Health with a packaged face shield donation from Inspire Q.

The Results

Once production of the face shields finished in mid-April, we delivered them to four facilities. We donated 20 shields to the Lexington Health Network, a nursing home in Lake Zurich, Illinois. We donated another 75 shields to the AMITA Health Saint Joseph Hospital in Elgin and 33 shields were donated to AMITA health in Hoffman Estates. For the final donation of 100 shields, a group of young volunteers for picked them up.

Inspire Q team member Allen Yau stands with a volunteer from Both are holding packages of face shields for essential workers.

This global pandemic came unexpectedly and hit us all hard. Everything changed and we were forced to adapt. Everyone had a role to play in stopping the spread. Many had to stay at home while many healthcare workers went on the frontlines. At iNSPIRE Q, we are eternally grateful for all the hard work and time put in by our essential workers. While we may not be on the frontlines, we will always continue to do our part and support our essential workers in the fight against COVID-19.

To all essential workers reading this, we would like to say, from the bottom of our hearts, thank you!

Want to learn more about our philanthropy? Check out more at #INSPIREQCARES.