Testing for coronavirus requires a special swab that reaches deeply into the nasal passage. (University of California Davis)

B.C. sorting medical equipment sales, donation offers for COVID-19

Supply hub has call out for masks, gowns, coronavirus swabs

B.C. has received many offers for sale or donation of medical equipment for managing the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic, and the equipment is proving useful, provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry says.

The province has set up a COVID-19 supply hub, with priority products including face masks, face shields, hand sanitizer, isolation and surgical gowns, nitrile and vinyl gloves and viral swabs.

“And we’ve had amazing businesses step up across Canada and here in B.C. to support this,” Henry said at her daily briefing on the pandemic April 8. “So far the testing that we’ve done has not revealed any concerns that I’m aware of, but there’s more to be done yet. Some of the supplies that recently came in are still undergoing the process.”

RELATED: Canada, U.S. reach deal for N95 masks from 3M

RELATED: 45 more COVID-19 cases in B.C., five more deaths

In the April 6 briefing from the B.C. legislature, Henry said she and Health Minister Adrian Dix have been “inundated” with offers of equipment, and some have been weeded out as unsuitable. Dix said the federal government has provided some supplies and the province has been ordering from new suppliers as global competition has become intense for the products.

“We have to keep working on that, and we’re hopeful that if we can get through these next couple of weeks, which are important weeks, that that supply, the world supply, will become better for us,” Dix said. “And certainly we have optimistic signs from Ottawa that there’s supply coming from there as well. Our efforts had some success recently, as have Ottawa’s, and we’re hoping for more.”

Dix and Henry have avoided making predictions about the days of supply of vital equipment, or the potential future COVID-19 cases and deaths. Projections of cases from Alberta and other provinces have produced a wide range of potential outcomes, such as between 500 and 6,600 people who may die in Alberta by the time the pandemic runs its course.


@tomfletcherbc
tfletcher@blackpress.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

BC legislatureCoronavirus

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Penticton woman to ‘load up the cart’ with toys for local hospital

Pascale-Ann Demers launched a GoFundMe to upgrade the toy supply at Penticton Regional Hospital

Cannery Brewing’s patio expansion plans delayed by COVID-19

Once open, the new patio will look quite different than originally planned

Playgrounds to reopen across the Okanagan on June 1

After nearly two months closure, playgrounds are set to reopen

Long-time South Okanagan principal retires, another takes the helm

Jeff Redden will start as principal of Naramata Elementary School in August

100 miles in 24 hours: a B.C. man’s mission to support the less fortunate

Merritt’s Darius Sam felt he needed to help his community after an encounter with a struggling woman

Mission prison COVID-19 outbreak ends, 9 new cases in B.C.

New positive test at Port Coquitlam care home

Flood watch for Salmon River upgraded as high temperatures, rain forecast

Shuswap Emergency Program warns residents to prepare now for possible extreme flooding

Man who bound, murdered Vancouver Island teen still a risk to public: parole board

Kimberly Proctor’s killer is still ‘mismanaging emotions,’ has had ‘temper tantrums’

VIDEO: Humpback whales put on quite a show

The ‘playful’ pod lingered by a Campbell River tour operator’s boat for quite some time

RCMP request public’s help in locating missing Salmon Arm man

Ken Derkach is a familiar face to many, one of the city’s residents who is without a home

Booze on Kelowna beaches? Mayor says ‘not at the moment’

Mayor Colin Basran says alcohol in public spaces is not on council’s radar right now — but that could change

Getting hitched at historic B.C. gold rush town still on table during COVID-19 pandemic

Micro-weddings, online visits, offered at Barkerville Historic Town and Park

VIDEO: Police look for suspect seen tripping elderly woman in Burnaby

The elderly woman was walking near the SkyTrain station when she was randomly tripped

Drunk man on a dirt bike and prohibited drivers without insurance keep Shuswap RCMP busy

Other calls resulted in excessive speed tickets and the arrests of two prohibited drivers

Most Read