WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senator Cory Booker (D-NJ) today urged a trade group representing medical technology companies that manufacture personal protective equipment (PPE) and other critical supplies to begin mobilizing its member companies to increase production to address the dire shortage.

“We must work rapidly to increase our nation’s supply of PPE and other necessary equipment, and many of AdvaMed’s member companies are critical to this effort,” Booker wrote in a letter to the President and CEO of the Advanced Medical Technology Association (AdvaMed).

Booker asked the trade group the following questions about its members and their production capacity of much-needed protective gear.

  1. How many U.S. manufacturers produce various types of PPE, including N95 masks, face shields, gowns, and gloves? Please provide a list of each of these manufacturers, the type of PPE they produce, and how much of each product they produced and sold last year. Please also include how much of each product was manufactured in the U.S., how much was manufactured outside the U.S. and how much was sold in the U.S.
  2. How many U.S. manufacturers produce ventilators, and how many ventilators did they produce last year? Please provide a list of each of these manufacturers and a breakdown of how many how many of the ventilators produced were made in the U.S. and sold in the U.S.
  3. To the best of your knowledge, how much of each type of PPE does our nation need currently and throughout the remainder of the COVID-19 pandemic? In your estimate, please include the needs of professionals who do not work in hospitals but still need PPE, such as first responders.
  4. To the best of your knowledge, how many ventilators does our nation need currently and throughout the remainder of the COVID-19 pandemic?
  5. What are U.S. manufacturers doing to meet our nation’s current and future needs for PPE and other supplies, such as ventilators?
  6. Will U.S. manufacturers alone be able to meet our nation’s needs for PPE and other supplies? If so, please provide your best estimate of when this need will be met given supply and demand projections and your knowledge of the pace of production at these companies. If not, please provide recommendations for the Administration, Congress, states, health care systems and others on securing all of the supplies needed to respond to COVID-19.
  7. Other than export controls, do U.S. manufacturers of PPE and ventilators face regulatory restrictions or other host government-imposed restrictions in shipping their products to the U.S.?
  8. What, if any, resources and direction do U.S. manufacturers need from Congress or the Administration to rapidly and dramatically increase production and distribution of PPE and other supplies?

Booker asked for a response to his questions by April 7.

Full text of the letter is available here.

Today’s letter follows a letter Booker sent earlier this month to President Trump and Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar sounding the alarm about the dire shortage of PPE and urging the Administration to take immediate action to address the issue.