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GM to Build Medical Ventilators, President Trump Says

The automaker recently temporarily halted vehicle production.

Todd LassaWriterGetty ImagesPhotographer

General Motors has offered to build ventilators for the effort against the COVID-19 coronavirus, President Trump revealed in his now daily briefing on the pandemic from the White House. Automakers GM, Ford Motor Company, and Fiat Chrysler have shut down their assembly plants in response to the crisis, and have discussed making such much-needed medical equipment to fight the pandemic.

"They will be very shortly," Trump responded to a reporter's question on how quickly that ventilators necessary for severe cases of COVID-19 could be made available to hospitals, where they are in short supply. "Because we've got one that wants to make ventilators."

The automaker, which Trump first declined to name, told him that it had made ventilators in the past, "which surprised me."

The possibility had been raised for GM, Ford Motor Company, and Fiat Chrysler earlier this week after they shuttered all production facilities at the request of the United Auto Workers union, although some experts felt a wartime-like shift to ventilators would be near impossible because of lack of available parts and because it would require assembling a much different sort of product.

Before moving on to another White House reporter's question, Trump revealed the company offering to make ventilators is GM. Automobile has reached out to the company for comment, and will add a response when available.

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