Medtronic: It Takes a Village

When slowing the spread of the virus jeopardizes the global flow of life-saving medical devices and supplies, we work together to find solutions
Jul 15, 2020 2:00 PM ET

With thousands of supply chain partners at the ready, we all braced for the challenging road ahead. Demand for ventilators rose practically overnight. So we set out to increase production. In a matter of days, we doubled capacity and introduced 24/7 operations. But as countries began closing borders, restricting imports and exports, suppliers sounded the alarms. The ramp-up was at risk.

The most complex Medtronic ventilator contains more than 1,500 components, including microprocessors and software to analyze dozens of patient variables. More than 100 suppliers in 14 different countries build the parts. From liquid injection molding components made by one supplier to printed circuit board assemblies built by another, each part plays a specific role in helping patients rest and breathe while their body fights the infection.

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