By Theodore Shoebat
As some European countries are rushing to manufacture more life saving ventilators to deal with coronavirus infection, the United States does not have enough and is presently sluggish in getting more. As we read in a report from the New York Times:
As the United States braces for an onslaught of coronavirus cases, hospitals and governments are confronting a grim reality: There are not nearly enough lifesaving ventilator machines to go around, and there is no way to solve the problem before the disease reaches full throttle.Desperate hospitals say they can’t find anywhere to buy the medical devices, which help patients breathe and can be the difference between life and death for those facing the most dire respiratory effects of the coronavirus.American and European manufacturers say they can’t speed up production enough to meet soaring demand, at least not anytime soon.And while the acute shortages are global, not just in the United States, some European governments are deploying wartime-mobilization tactics to get factories churning out more ventilators — and to stop domestic companies from exporting them.
The United States, by contrast, has been slow to develop a national strategy for accelerating the production of ventilators. That appears to reflect in part the federal government’s sluggish reaction to the coronavirus, with President Trump and others initially playing down the threat. This week, Mr. Trump urged governors to find ways to procure new ventilators. “Try getting it yourselves,” he said.
“The reality is there is absolutely not enough … We see that in Italy, we saw that in China, we see it in France and other countries. We could sell I don’t know how many. … “Italy wanted to order 4,000, but there’s not a chance,” he said. “We sent them something like 400.”
Hospitals in the US only have about 160,000 ventilators and there are only a further 12,700 in the National Strategic Stockpile. In the words of Thomas R. Frieden, the director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention during the Obama administration: “In a worst-case scenario it would be very difficult to have a sufficient number”. What this means is that if there is a serious coronavirus outbreak in the US, doctors will be forced to decide who gets a ventilator and who doesn’t, which is the equivalent of determining who lives and who dies. We know this because this is what has been happening in Italy. This was recently explained in a video showing a few interviews of Italians by the Washington Post: