N95 masks - the reason for the shortage

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Not surprising - no long-term vision with that one. Thinking ahead to the next four years was all. From PJ Media:

It’s Barack Obama's Fault There’s a Shortage of N95 Respirator Masks
Last week Bloomberg published a story about the mask shortages and how that was making it difficult for hospital workers in various states to take alternative measures to help protect themselves during the coronavirus pandemic, including making masks out of office supplies, and taking masks home to bleach them so they can be reused. It paints a horrible picture of chaos in our nation’s hospitals, and attempts to blame the problem on the Trump administration, because the Strategic National Stockpile, which is maintained by the Health and Human Services Department, is insufficient for the current crisis.

Back in 2005, the Bush administration published the “National Strategy for Pandemic Influenza.” The strategy called for plans to distribute medical supplies from the national stockpile and to assist state and local efforts to handle an outbreak, but last month, Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar told Congress that the national stockpile of N95 respirator masks was 12 million—a mere fraction of the 1.7 billion masks government scientists estimated back in 2015 would be needed in the event of a severe flu outbreak.

How did we end up with such a low stockpile? It used to be much larger. What happened to it?

Buried several paragraphs deep in the aforementioned Bloomberg story we find out that “after the H1N1 influenza outbreak in 2009, which triggered a nationwide shortage of masks and caused a 2- to 3-year backlog orders for the N95 variety, the stockpile distributed about three-quarters of its inventory and didn’t build back the supply.”

That's right, the shortage of N95 masks can be traced back to the H1N1 (swine flu) pandemic of 2009... when Barack Obama was president.

Much more at the site - more links and corroborating data. Not Trump's fault. Obama's fault - kicking the can down the road as he did on so many things. This one happened to come back to bite him.

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This page contains a single entry by DaveH published on March 22, 2020 4:01 PM.

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