In order to properly treat patients with severe cases of coronavirus in intensive care units, ventilators are required in order to help the patient breathe. Many countries have a deficit of ventilators and are trying to find ways to bring more in their respective hospitals.
The Netherlands ordered ventilators two weeks ago from the company Philips, according to their CEO, who was part of the talk show Op1 this Sunday, reports NU.
The world should have paid more attention to the situation in China, according to Philips CEO
On the talk show Op1, Philips CEO, Frans van Houten, presented the situation of ventilators. According to him, throughout the months of January and February, many ventilators were delivered to China, back when it was the epicentre of the outbreak.
Afterwards, in February, when the outbreak started in Italy, more ventilators were shipped there, up to the point when the stock ran out. Ever since the company has been trying to scale up its production operations in order to meet the ever-increasing demand for ventilators, not only in the Netherlands but worldwide.
As of now, the Netherlands ordered 1000 ventilators two weeks ago, and a hundred of them were delivered this Saturday. The rest of the order will arrive depending on how fast the company can scale up their operations successfully and produce more. According to their CEO, they are now trying to produce what normally would have taken a year, in just a matter of weeks.
Besides ventilators, the company will also produce additional medical equipment that might be lacking in different countries and hospitals.
Concerns over US protectionism seizing the ventilators produced by Philips
Philips produces part of its ventilators within the United States, with production centres in California and Pennsylvania. President Donald Trump could potentially enforce the Defence Production Act, which would expand the supply of resources in US factories, including the Philips plants located in the country.
If this happens, then it would be much harder to deliver the ventilators from the US to Europe, the Netherlands included. As of now, the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs is in talks with the Trump Administration and Philips, and as long as the talks continue successfully, the exports of ventilators should continue smoothly.
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Feature Image: J. van Rosmalen/Wikimedia Commons