Stories are coming in from all over the country that tell of medical supplies running critically low and there are worries that supplies won’t be replenished anytime soon.
“Patients will die needlessly, and so will doctors and nurses.”
— Esther Choo (@choo_ek) March 23, 2020
Over the weekend the American Medical Association (AMA) wrote:
In a letter to President Trump, the AMA, American Hospital Association (AHA) and the American Nurses Association (ANA) urged the president to “immediately use the DPA to increase the domestic production of medical supplies and equipment that hospitals, health systems, physicians, nurses and all front line providers so desperately need.”
The growing supply chain shortage of personal protective equipment (PPE) and the ripple effect to those on the front lines is a foremost concern for all health care professionals.
Politicians are sounding the alarm as well, saying things are getting more dire by the day.
Mayor Bill de Blasio: "If we don't get ventilators this week, we are going to start losing lives we could've saved." pic.twitter.com/o94HQJQnfw
— The Hill (@thehill) March 23, 2020
The government can and should do something about this. Today, during his daily briefing, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo again pressed the White House to take control of the situation and stop leaving it to individual states to fight for supplies:
“Supplies are the ongoing challenge nationwide. masks, ppe, ventilators are the number one precious commodity. This is happening on an ad hoc basis. we are competing with other states.”
“Let the federal government put into place the Federal Defense Protection Act. All it does is say to a factory, you must produce this quantity. that’s all it does. I understand the voluntary public-private sector partnership, and there are a lot of good companies who are coming forward and saying, let us help. But it can’t just be, hey, who wants to help, let me know. We need to know what the numbers of what we need produced and who is going to produce that and when.”
Cuomo calls on President Trump to use the Defense Production Act to ramp up production of supplies for coronavirus. He says that until then, states are forced to compete with each other and bid for what they need: "You cannot run this operation that way." https://t.co/W9xh8jWUWq pic.twitter.com/OlTMEDwZai
— CBS News (@CBSNews) March 23, 2020
Today MSNBC’s Joe Scarborough remarked (watch above):
“I want to go back and ask why Donald Trump, why Jared Kushner, why somebody in this government, cannot give us straight talk, straight numbers, straight information about how many masks are in production? What do they expect the states, the hospitals, the nurses, the doctors, to need over the next three weeks when maybe up to a million Americans are going to be infected? Maybe it’s 500,000. We don’t know”
“Why can’t they tell us — why can’t we go to a site and see how many masks are being made, how many gloves are being made, what the need is, what the goal is, where we are, how long it will take in the process. All they say is 3m is making masks and we’ll get some in a month. Talking about 500,000 masks that’s a lot, but is it the 35 million masks that we are probably going need by the end of the crisis? It’s not even close, no.”
CBS’s Gayle King also pressed the Surgeon General on this today but grew frustrated when she kept getting the same standard line.
President Trump announced new efforts to get crucial supplies like masks, gloves and surgical gowns to medical centers, amid shortages in some states.
— CBS This Morning (@CBSThisMorning) March 23, 2020