90 Miles From Tyranny : Coronavirus crisis: Medical supply shortage traced to sudden drop in Chinese imports

Sunday, March 22, 2020

Coronavirus crisis: Medical supply shortage traced to sudden drop in Chinese imports












Crucial medical supplies needed to fight coronavirus are running dangerously low in American hospitals — because almost all are imported from China.

Shipments of face masks, testing swabs, hand sanitizer and surgical gowns cratered in mid-February after Chinese factories shuttered to tamp down the rampant spread of COVID-19.

When the plants restarted production, government authorities required manufacturers of N95 masks — used by doctors and nurses — to reserve almost all of them for Chinese customers.

No N95 masks have arrived from China since Feb. 19, an Associated Press analysis found.

“It’s not safe at all. Nobody is safe,” said Consuelo Vargas, an emergency room nurse in Chicago, who bought out a hardware store’s stock of painter booties and jumpsuits Friday.

The sudden fracturing of the supply chain is bringing in new players.

A plant in Aberdeen, South Dakota, owned by Minnesota’s 3M, is running around the clock to produce millions of N95 masks a month, while factories in Honduras have taken up the slack in...

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1 comment:

  1. A doctor at one of the hospitals here is printing masks with a 3D printer.

    ReplyDelete