Stirling donates 3D printers to support PPE production

The University of Stirling has gifted two 3D printers – and loaned another two – to a local school that is using the devices to create personal protective equipment (PPE) for healthcare workers.

Four printers and 20 rolls of plastic filament have been provided to Larbert High School, whose staff are producing face shields for hospitals, pharmacies and care homes as they battle the COVID-19 pandemic.

Rebecca Elliott, a teacher of design and technology at Larbert High, is leading the project. She said:

“Since this began, we have engaged a wide range of stakeholders and other local institutions to join in the community effort – and the response we have received has been amazing.

“The University of Stirling’s donation will help us to increase capability and production quantity – we are thankful for this donation. The equipment is currently being used for face visors, however, this could lead to further PPE initiatives for hospitals and other healthcare settings.”

PPE used by doctors and nurses treating contagious patients includes visors, gowns, gloves and masks with varying levels of protection. More than 2,500 visors have been created at the School since they received the printers and staff are aiming to ramp up the initiative in the coming weeks to help combat the nationwide shortage of equipment.

One of those to benefit is pharmacist Jonathan Burton, who runs the Right Medicine Pharmacy branch on the University campus. He said:

“Pharmacies are on the frontline of the coronavirus pandemic and it’s vital that our staff – like those working in our hospitals – have PPE to protect themselves from risk.

“We heard that Larbert High had started to produce this equipment – so we put in an order, and it arrived today. The masks are good quality and they will provide our staff with important protection in their interactions with patients.