By the 30th of March, 1404 GoFundMe search results were obtained with the word "N95," which is increasing. These movements have increased primarily in the United States over the last week and a half, ranging from demands of a few thousand dollars to millions. With the WhatsApp networks, slacks and discord channels, a fast moving self organized network is developing that is attempting to do what appear to be insufficient quickly enough for federal agencies, governmental governments and conventional medical companies: import N95 respirators — the NIOSH, an increasingly sought-after national protective agency.
White House’s Request to Volunteer
Vice President Pence requested construction firms to donate their stock of N95 respirators to their local hospitals and to stop buying more. In the midst of a big lack of such masks, which can block at least 95 per cent of 0.3-micron particles, their name comes from this call.
These N95 air breathers are mostly used by construction employees at sites with high levels of concrete dust, for instance, since they are able to filter out these very small particles. These masks are currently insufficient supply — and at very high prices. While the WHO does not advise most people to use masks, many persons have purchased them anyway, leading to this shortage. They are currently completely sold out at Home Depot, for instance.
The Situation of the Healthcare Industry
When more and more American hospital staff focus on the awful shortage of personal protective equipment ( PPE) they explore ways to support people outside the chain of supply of medical equipment. Art students shred metal supplies, businesses donate private inventories, and even manufacture DIY masks. Mask importers mainly operating on Chinese imports, where the majority of the N95 masks have been developed and where supply is currently greater, have a slightly different character and scale — some people, yes, but some of them partner with major venture capital and start-ups.
All these players leap first and foremost in the dynamic world of supplies chain vetting and logistics management whether individual smaller fundraisers, ever-growing charitable organizations, or VCs. Some people have a related history in healthcare but not generally. They are passing through these peculiar canals in the form of a newly developed non-official grey market that is vigilant about fraud and price increase but desperate to provide doctors and nurses with something that might offer a minor profit.
It is possible for this ad hoc market to dissipate as soon as a supply for N95s evens, and for weeks , or even months, to be able to satisfy the informal efforts due to the vacuum from government decisions to make large-scale purchases or to start domestic production through the Defense Production Act. The fact that such huge grassroots projects must exist all speaks to how vulnerable supply chains were even before this crisis — and, without drastic reform, how likely they are to collapse again in the future. While the foundation, generosity and dedication for much of that initiative is extremely admirable.
Volunteers to Donate N95 Masks to US
Saturday Apple CEO Tim Cook tweeted about the company's donation of millions to healthcare professionals in the United States and Europe to help prevent the new coronavirus from spreading.
The operations team of Apple uses its supply chain expertise, according to Cook 's tweet, to a source, procure and donate masks, which explains how Apple was able to acquire such masks in such little time. The Apple initiative comes following a press conference held by US Deputy Chief Mike Pence on 21 March that the availability of PPE's in the U.S. is diminishing and hospitals have been faced with a lack of masks, gowns and other supplies.
Masks are highly requested worldwide, but stocks are limited. In a Note to the workers on Saturday, Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos said that masks are still in global shortages. Bezos wrote that the company has put buying orders on millions of face masks that we want to offer our workers and contractors that can't operate from home.
In order to help combat COVID-19, India issued 1,8 million ninety-five N95 masks to Philadelphia, Pennsylvania's largest city, setting a further example of robust Indo-American health-care partnership.
For the Future
In certain respects, the N95 grey market reflects a metastatic variant of crises identified by the US healthcare system. There should be no need for people to set up GoFundMes to import N95 masks into hospitals rather than set up GoFundMes for cancer care. Gray markets arise from a vacuum of capital, not mere huckster opportunism. The bottom top organization now prospering to help healthcare professionals at the front line is profoundly motivating and important, but this can not become a permanent stopover for a broken supply chain as the coronavirus pandemic takes weeks and months.
It is not an easy equation to repair the supply chain to prevent such shortages from happening again. It includes partially domestic mask production, but also a domestic ecosystem for manufacturing all components of the mask.
The industry of medical supplies requires even fundamentally different incentives — namely, that the demands for capitalist benefit must not be respected. Any factors that make a supply chain vulnerable are often something that States and markets prefer to reward.
There are no changes that ad hoc groups are now able or can take place to bring N95 masks into hospitals. These changes are not possible. They have more than ample resources right now and for the near future, crisis response, the economic reform of healthcare, as we know it, will possibly take precedence. However, if ordinary citizens facing the challenge of exceptional times can only be perceived as a victory of altruism and not as a failure of capitalism, if businesses have to take advantage of diverse sources or stock holding, if governments fail to treat healthcare as a fundamental human right, what we see right now is going to happening again.