7 COVID-19 updates for supply chain leaders

Seven COVID-19-related updates for ASC supply chain leaders to know:

Effective April 1, Amazon is restricting sales of N95 and surgical masks, as well as facial shields, surgical gowns, surgical gloves and large-volume sanitizers, to the general public.

The Department of Justice has established a Hoarding and Price Gouging Task Force, which on March 30 discovered about 192,000 N95 respirator masks, 598,000 medical grade gloves and 130,000 other critical supplies being hoarded. The supplies were seized and distributed to healthcare providers.

Henry Schein Medical developed an antibody rapid blood test called the Standard Q COVID-19 IgM/IgG Rapid Test, which can deliver results within 15 minutes of being administered. The company plans to significantly expand availability in April.

The Illinois Department of Public Health is asking all ASCs, outpatient surgery centers and veterinarians to donate unused personal protective equipment to providers on the front lines of the COVID-19 outbreak.

Medline is using its manufacturing facility in Hartland, Wis., to produce hand sanitizer. The company is also working to sterilize 100,000 N95 masks a day and participating in an emergency COVID-19 relief effort led by the federal government. McKesson, Cardinal Health and Henry Schein are also involved in the federal government's initiative, dubbed Project Airbridge.

Pittsburgh-based Allegheny Health Network is using the AHN St. Vincent Surgery Center in Erie, Pa., to sterilize N95 masks. AHN developed its mask sterilization process using research from Durham, N.C.-based Duke University and its own research.

In Alabama, where there have been 2,810 confirmed cases of COVID-19 and 333 hospitalizations statewide, a resident and Auburn (Ala.) University employee is sewing surgical masks for providers. He has donated more than 150 so far.

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