24.03.2021

Celebrating National Doctors' Day

On March 30th 2021, we celebrate National Doctors' Day and say thank you to physicians around the world for their hard work and sacrifices while treating our families, friends, and colleagues over the past year. 

We have a special appreciation for the selfless caretakers that have been on the front lines of the pandemic, subjecting themselves and their own families to additional stress, anxiety, and exhaustion while diagnosing and treating COVID-19 patients.    

As we reflect on the critical role Doctors have played in our society, we are grateful for the opportunity to provide materials that are used to support them, not only to improve the lives of patients, but also to protect their own lives.  

Silicones are used to support the health and safety of Doctor’s and Healthcare professionals in several ways:

Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) 

As the pandemic began to spread around the world in early 2020, so did the demand for PPE, such as protective face masks.  While being in such proximity to patients, Doctors may be required to wear these masks for extended periods of time.  The longer the mask is worn, the more uncomfortable it may become, and the more likely it is to be removed, subjecting oneself to potential infection risks.   Silicones can be used to help improve the comfort of protective face masks by providing a much more comfortable interface between the mask and the skin.

During the pandemic, a mask manufacturer approached us to help address this problem, and we were able to work with them to develop a custom silicone gel that was used to improve comfort of the mask.  In addition to meeting this innovation need, we were also able to quickly ramp up production to meet the increased demand requirements.  

Diagnostics & Remote Healthcare

Over the past year, the demand for safe and reliable diagnostic capabilities significantly increased. While there has been a developing shift to remote healthcare over the last few years, that shift was accelerated in 2020.  These increasing needs in diagnostics and remote healthcare are dependent upon medical technology that can reliably capture and transmit information for Doctors to safely diagnose and treat patients.  Such technologies enable Doctors to assess patients from a distance, thereby reducing their risk of exposure to COVID-19.  These needs have driven innovation in the design and manufacturing of medical devices, as well as innovation of materials incorporated into these devices.  Silicone materials are an excellent fit in this space because of their combination of biocompatibility and functional versatility. They can be custom formulated to meet a variety of needs, such as soft electrically conductive elastomers, low temperature cure encapsulants, or materials suitable for implantable devices. We were happy to supply several customers with a range of silicone materials used in COVID-19 diagnostic test kits, custom conductive formulations for wearable monitoring, and ultimately helping to meet these evolving needs in diagnostics and remote healthcare.

Vaccine Production and Administration

Silicone materials are commonly used by the Pharma industry for various applications during the development, manufacturing, and commercialization of biologics.  For vaccines, this includes single-use tubing used during development and production, siliconization of glass vials used for vaccine packaging, and syringe components or needle lubricants used in vaccine administration. Vaccinations have empowered Doctors, and their families, to feel more confident as they are treating patients.  Hopefully, not only protecting them from the physical complications of COVID-19, but the mental ones as well.  

Happy National Doctors' Day! Thank you for everything you do.

 

About Elkem Silicones 

Elkem Silicones has more than 3,500 employees dedicated to providing silicone solutions with a personal touch that deliver your potential. Elkem Silicones, a division of Elkem, is one of the world’s leading fully integrated silicone suppliers, operating 13 multi-functional manufacturing sites and 13 R&D centers around the globe. Based in Lyon, France, Elkem Silicones offers a full range of silicone technologies for diverse specialty markets including aerospace, automotive, construction, consumer goods, energy, healthcare, paper, personal care and textiles. 

To learn more, please visit Elkem Silicones Website

About Elkem ASA 

Founded in 1904, Elkem is one of the world's leading suppliers of silicon-based advanced materials with operations throughout the value chain from quartz to specialty silicones, as well as attractive market positions in specialty ferrosilicon alloys and carbon materials. Elkem is a publicly listed company on the Oslo Stock Exchange (ticker code: ELK) and is headquartered in Oslo. The company has more than 6,370 employees with 29 production sites and an extensive network of sales offices worldwide. In 2019 Elkem had revenues of NOK 22.7 billion. To learn more, please visit Elkem Website