La COVID-19 pandemic has put the medical supplement industry on the ropes, overwhelmed by a demand that continues to grow as the disease continues to spread.

By MiamiDiario Newsroom

The new coronavirus has spread to more than 2 million infected worldwide and has killed more than  137.000 people. According to a recent report by  Bloomberg public health officials warn that trade restrictive measures linked to the medical supplies could andworsen the deficit and risk making the poorest nations more vulnerable to the spread of the coronavirus. "In some countries, including Japan and Germany, doctors are being told to reuse the only mask (face mask, chinstrap, mouth cover) they receive daily due to lack of supply", he points out.

With the deadly virus present in 100 countries, companies cannot meet the demand for the masks needed by healthcare workers. This has led governments to seek supplies, including the United States, which is stored in Germany and South Korea, which totally prohibited the exports of masks, ”they point out in the report.

aim Bloomberg which WHO has sent supplies to 47 countries, including Iran, Cambodia, and Uganda, there will soon be shortages, especially of the N95 masks that block 95% of airborne particles to combat the current virus.

Manufacturers must increase mask production by another 40% to meet demand, said Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, the director-general of the World Health Organization.

"Industry and governments must act quickly to boost supply, ease export restrictions and put in place measures to stop speculation and hoarding," Tedros said in a statement on March 3.

Despite Tedros' appeal, South Korea, Germany and Russia Days later they announced a ban on the export of masks and other protective equipment. Join other nations or territories as India, Taiwan, Thailand and Kazakhstan that they had previously prohibited exports, punctuate the report

Chinese dependency 

According to Bloomberg  the Ddependence on the masks that China manufactures, and some other countries, has some calling for a rethink of supply chains. Therefore, according to the Bloomberg report, the World Medical Association, wants governments to set up factories in major markets like the European Union and the USA to ensure an adequate supply of critical drugs, vaccines, and other medical needs.

Before the epidemic, China produced about half of the world's production of masks with about 20 million units daily, according to state media Xinhua. Since then, the factories have increased production more than five times and they are enlisting automakers to make them. That is still insufficient, the report indicates.

According to Bloomberg In the US, the efforts of manufacturers of 3M Co. and DuPont De Nemours Inc. masks they also fall short in terms of demand. DuPont, which makes masks and protective body suits used by first responders, said it has increased production to more than three times its usual global capacity.

3M, the largest American manufacturer of N95 respirators, has ramped up production since the outbreak in China. "We've added staff, we've added overtime, we've added technology, we've been ramping up manufacturing lines," 3M spokeswoman Jennifer Ehrlich said. "We expect this demand for ventilators and other supplies to continue to outstrip supply for the foreseeable future."

According to the numbers you handle Bloomberg that The US only has about 1% of the 3,5 billion masks it needs to combat a serious outbreak, Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar has said. The country plans to buy 500 million surgical masks and N95 respirators for the national stockpile.

According to Bloomberg Peter Navarro, a hawkish trade adviser to President Donald Trump, is also putting pressure on United States to enact an export ban of certain medical supplies, such as face masks, and force pharmaceutical companies to manufacture drugs domestically.

the weakest link

Highlights  Bloomberg  that public health experts are concerned that if more developed countries ban exports of masks and protective equipment, poorer nations could risk widening outbreaks, particularly among the medical workers. "It will cripple and freeze the market," CSIS's Morrison said. "The cumulative impact of these measures is to create a paralysis, a huge gridlock."

Export bans and other measures taken by developed countries risk deepen world divisions over the virussaid Lawrence Gostin, director of the O'Neill Institute for National and Global Health Law at Georgetown University in Washington, DC

«It would completely destroy global cooperation if Covid-19 became a big killer, and we see hundreds of thousands of deaths in lower-income countries with relatively few deaths in the north of the world," said Gostin, who is also the director of the WHO Collaborating Center on Public Health Laws and Human Rights, concludes the report.

Read the original version at Bloomberg

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