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Larson Demands Trump and DOD Rapidly Increase Production of Medical Equipment

March 20, 2020
Press Release

Hartford, CT – Today, Rep. John B. Larson (CT-01) sent a letter to President Trump asking him to use Department of Defense (DOD) resources to increase production of Personal Protection Equipment (PPE), ventilators, and other essential items. Earlier this week, Larson called for a war-time production of these resources.

“I am writing today to ask you to marshal Department of Defense (DOD) resources to contribute to broader whole-of-government efforts to rapidly increase the current production of personal protective equipment, ventilators and other essential items in short supply to address the strain that has been placed on our healthcare system during the continued spread of COVID-19…. As the pandemic grows, states are struggling to secure basic medical equipment and supplies to address the demand on their healthcare systems…. I implore you to take swift and immediate action to ensure that we do not end up in the same situation that Italy and other countries are in. The American people deserve an immediate and rapid response that requires utilizing all possible resources,” wrote Larson.

The letter can be viewed here and below.

 

March 20, 2020

 

President Donald J. Trump 

The White House

1600  Pennsylvania Avenue NW  

Washington, D.C. 20500   

CC:  Department of Defense Secretary Esper 

CC:  Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Azar    

 

Dear President Trump,

I am writing today to ask you to marshal Department of Defense (DOD) resources to contribute to broader whole-of-government efforts to rapidly increase the current production of personal protective equipment, ventilators and other essential items in short supply to address the strain that has been placed on our healthcare system during the continued spread of COVID-19. As you know, DOD has a range of assets that can be utilized to help contain, treat, and ultimately prevent spread of the virus. I commend you for invoking of the Defense Production Act.  Now I am urging you to use all available authorities and resources to get manufacturers to immediately begin manufacturing more ventilators and other medical equipment at war-time production rates. I hope that you continue to proactively prepare rather than wait for an escalating crisis to force your hand.

As the pandemic grows, states are struggling to secure basic medical equipment and supplies to address the demand on their healthcare systems. Without these critical resources we risk the collapse of hospitals, health systems, and clinics.  The daily health risk to our first responders, emergency services workers, physicians and nurses that are on the frontlines battling this crisis is too great not to utilize all resources available.

In addition, we insist that you utilize DoD’s, research and development resources for vaccine research, mobile hospital units and beds to ensure hospital have adequate capacity to care for patients, and emergency funds. Many of these resources were used in the Ebola response in 2014-2015.   I implore you to take swift and immediate action to ensure that we do not end up in the same situation that Italy and other countries are in. The American people deserve an immediate and rapid response that requires utilizing all possible resources.

Thank you for your attention to these important issues.

  

  

Sincerely,

 

John B. Larson

MEMBER OF CONGRESS

 

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