WINDSOR, ONT. -- Bruce Power announced it is supporting Essex County in its fight against COVID-19 by donating masks, sanitizer and offering use of its mobile pop-up hospital.

The company said Friday it is donating 20,000 masks and a quantity of hand sanitizer, and through the Ontario Ministry of Health, is also offering use of its mobile 50-bed pop-up hospital, which has been ready to support rural communities throughout the current crisis.

“As a company based in rural Ontario, we recognize the critical role that the agriculture and agri-food industries have for the province,” said James Scongack, executive vice-president, corporate affairs and operational services, Bruce Power. “This donation is meant to support the province’s just-announced steps to assist farming families and workers in Windsor-Essex to protect them against contracting COVID-19.”

In April, the Bruce Power Retooling and Economic Recovery Council was formed to operate for the duration of the pandemic and includes all of Bruce Power’s Ontario-based suppliers, many of whom are located in rural communities across the province.

The company said the focus has been and will be on continued retooling of the supply chain to meet front-line COVID-19 needs and to contribute to the province’s economy recovery in the short, medium and long term.

Six farms in Leamington and Kingsville are in outbreak status. Hundreds of workers have tested positive for the virus in the region and two have died.

The provincial government has implemented a three-point plan to reduce the risk of transmission of COVID-19 in the area.

“On behalf of the County of Essex, we want to extend our sincerest gratitude to Bruce Power for their readiness and willingness to assist us during this challenging time,” said Essex County Warden Gary McNamara. “It is only through collaborative efforts that we are able to combat the serious health threat that is COVID-19 in our communities.”

Since April 1, Bruce Power has provided about 1.5-million pieces of PPE to health-care, front-line, essential-needs and other workers in Grey, Bruce and Huron counties in addition to other parts of Ontario.