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

French fries to juicy tomatoes, rock art brings joy to walkers in Victoria

James Bay yard filled with painted rocks delights all ages

‘Depression-era’ unemployment figures could hit Greater Victoria

South Island Prosperity Project launches new dashboard to measure effects of COVID-19

Langford bartender hosts singalong livestream for seniors

Live Senior Singalong takes place daily at 1 p.m. on Facebook

Langford woman frustrated over visitor restrictions to see 96-year-old mother

Island Health to introduce virtual visits at long-term care facilities

Shot fired through young family’s home in Victoria, man in custody

No injuries reported from incident in 1200-block of Yates Street

LIVE: Procession to honour Snowbirds Capt. Jennifer Casey comes to Halifax

Snowbirds service member died in a crash in Kamloops one week ago

One man dead after standoff with Chilliwack RCMP

The Independent Investigations Office of B.C. is investigating the RCMP’s role in the death

B.C. employers worry about safety, cash flow, second wave in COVID-19 restart

A survey found 75 per cent of businesses worry about attracting customers

Facing changes together: Your community, your journalists

The COVID-19 pandemic has changed the world in ways that would have… Continue reading

Ex-BC Greens leader Andrew Weaver says province came close to early election

Disagreement centred on the LNG Canada project in northern B.C.

Canada’s NHL teams offer options to season-ticket holders

Canadian teams are offering refunds, but also are pushing a number of incentives to let them keep the money

B.C. premier says lessons to learn from past racism during response to pandemic

B.C. formally apologized in the legislature chamber in 2008 for its role in the Komagata Maru tragedy

Snowbirds to remain at Kamloops Airport indefinitely after fatal crash

small contingent of the Snowbirds team is staying in Kamloops, acting as stewards of the jets

82% of all test-positive COVID-19 cases in B.C. have recovered

B.C. had 303 active cases as of Saturday, May 23

Most Read