Arlington, VA

This article was written by Sindy Yeh, Senior Business Ambassador for Arlington Economic Development.

May is Business Appreciation Month, and now more than ever, it seems appropriate to highlight and thank the many Arlington businesses that are making our community and the world a better place in the wake of COVID-19.

From diligently working to stop the spread of the virus to providing online tools to mitigate disruptions, Arlington companies are leveraging their knowledge and technology platforms to make a difference during this unprecedented time.

Stopping the Spread of the Virus

For decades, DARPA has been at the forefront of research and investment in innovation. Accordingly, DARPA is funding multiple projects to combat the virus. Currently, scientists are working to design a new COVID-19 blood-based test that could identify carriers before they become infectious, as well as an antibody treatment to combat the virus until a vaccine is ready.

As experts warn of a second coronavirus wave in the fall, DARPA is partnering with pharmaceutical companies and universities to develop treatments quickly.

Zansors, an Arlington-based health analytics startup, is normally marketing its wearable sensors. Recognizing the increased demand for face masks, Zansors redirected its efforts to focus on its washable face covering masks.

One of its masks, the Micro-Shield, has recently been authorized by the FDA for use by health care personnel and the general public as a source control to help prevent the spread of COVID-19 infection and illness. Baabi Das, co-founder of Zansors, states that the Micro-Shield face masks have gained traction and are now used by the U.S. Army and Air Force warfighters.

Blue Raster, Courthouse based web mapping company, has been assisting government agencies by providing COVID tracking dashboards over the past month. For the states of Virginia and Nevada, the company built a geospatially focused platform providing county level data on active COVID cases and fatalities, as well as number of beds in hospitals. This allows state officials to view and assess the current situation, guiding informed decision-making.

Providing Virtual Learning Tools

School administrators and educators have been grappling with the challenges associated with school closures and delivering a remote learning curriculum. Several of Arlington’s leading education technology companies have offered online tools to improve the at-home learning process.

Hobsons, based in Clarendon, focuses on connecting students to opportunities in education. Its college and career readiness software offers academic planning, career exploration and college prep tools for high schools, including Arlington Public Schools. Pivoting to serve students who are now at home, Hobsons has created instruction guides designed to help students navigate its education platforms on their own reducing support required by school staff.

Rosetta Stone, a pioneer in language learning, has recently provided all K-12 customers with an unlimited license to its literacy products in response to COVID. Schools that have purchased digital reading and literacy tools can now extend their software license to all students.

Brazen hosts a virtual career fair platform allowing universities to host job fairs online. In April, Brazen offered Marymount University the opportunity to use its platform free of charge to connect companies with Marymount students looking for internships.

More than 85 students registered to meet with 15 companies. As Ed Barrientos, CEO of Brazen, commented, “Brazen is in a lucky position of having technology that helps organizations bring their events online, so demand is high right now. We are pleased to donate the use of the platform to Marymount, our Arlington neighbor.”

Connecting Healthcare Suppliers and Purchasers

The coronavirus has caused huge disruptions for the global supply chain. Shortages and delays have upended industries ranging from manufacturing to food, healthcare and medical supplies. Arlington is home to several leading industry associations that quickly responded to the national emergency by building technology platforms connecting healthcare providers to available resources.

The Consumer Technology Association and American Telemedicine Association launched an online directory connecting health care providers and patients with health care resources. The website features a growing list of digital health resources to assist the healthcare industry during the coronavirus outbreak.

Scoutbee, in Crystal City, is an international supply chain sourcing company. It uses software powered by AI and big data to scout and source suppliers from all over the world for its customers. In the wake of COVID-19, the company launched a free, emergency online sourcing platform for government organizations, NGOs and healthcare providers for medical equipment and supplies.

Organizations that are in critical need of supplies such as surgical masks, hazmat suits, swabs and other items can submit a request through Scoutbee’s platform and receive access details within 48 hours.

Is your Arlington company doing something innovative to help the community? We’d love to highlight your company during Business Appreciation Month. Please submit your information to be featured.

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