Government pledges continuous supplies of PPE
The government has confirmed that health and social workers dealing with COVID-19 patients will have a continuous supply of PPE (personal protective equipment).
It has been announced that in November, there will be enough visors, gowns and face masks in stock to last for four months. By December, around 70% of the PPE purchased will be from UK manufacturers. Matt Hancock, the Health and Care Secretary, said:
“We have built robust and resilient supply chains from scratch and thanks to an absolutely phenomenal effort from UK businesses, almost three-quarters of demand for PPE will soon be met by UK manufacturers.”
He promised that health workers will have all the PPE that they need when dealing with COVID-19 patients. Over 300 deals have been made with suppliers for PPE, and UK manufacturers have been increasing their PPE production so that the 70% UK-made target is achieved. Lord Paul Deighton, who advises Matt Hancock, said that procurement experts have overhauled distribution channels so that there is less reliance on overseas manufacturers.
The PPE procurement system that has been established is expected to mean that a dependable supply chain will serve the long-term needs of the NHS and care sector. He said: "It has been an extraordinary effort by so many to get to this point but we will not lose our focus - the PPE strategy outlines how we are building further resilience in order to be ready for a new wave of infections in the autumn, winter or beyond."