Vice President Pence asked construction companies to donate their stocks of N95 respirator masks to their local hospitals battling coronavirus, and stop ordering more for the time being. This call comes in the middle of a major shortage of these masks, which get their name from being able to block 95% of 0.3 micron particles, according to Tech Crunch.
While the WHO doesn’t recommend the use of masks for most people, several have bought them anyway, which contributed to this shortage.
“We urge construction companies to donate their inventory of N95 masks to your local hospital and forgo additional orders of these industrial masks because of what the president asked to be included in legislation that is moving through Congress today, these industrial masks that they use on construction sites are perfectly acceptable for healthcare workers to be protected from a respiratory disease,” Pence said. “What we ask construction companies—which our president knows very well from his background—we are asking them to donate their N95 masks to their local hospitals and also forgo making additional orders.”
Pence and President Trump also noted that the government is looking at making sure that the military will be able to establish field hospitals or expand existing facilities, if necessary.