Around 21:00 hours Tuesday, April 7 landed in Mexico City the plane Missionary of Peace Aeromexico with more than 10 tons of medical supplies purchased in China to face the contingency caused by the virus COVID-19.
Hugo López-Gatell, undersecretary of Prevention and Health Promotion, reported at the press conference the evening that was last Saturday that a plane “rented and provided by Aeromexico” went to Shanghai, China with officials of the Secretariat of Foreign Relations (SRE) and with the goal of bringing to Mexico the inputs that were acquired over the last few weeks. The purchase was made by the ERS in coordination with the Institute of Health Welfare (Insabi).
The Government of Mexico, through a press release, announced that the shipment “brought 1,184 boxes with 10.1 tons of gloves of exploration and masks KN95 of Shanghai, which are products that are indispensable in the work of treatment and care of the COVID-19, under the regulations and guidelines established by the Federal Commission for Protection against Health Risks”.
The assistant secretary stated that the search efforts were taking three to four weeks, and recognized the “participation essential” of the mexican foreign ministry, and his direct team, who have been part of the process of seeking inputs across the country to find the acquired.
In the loading of the 7th of April arrived supplies of personal protection: gloves, masks, face masks KN95, hats, goggles, among others. “This will allow us to cover nearly 100% of the need of personal protective equipment for the health units of the national health system” said López Gatell.
This will not be the only flight: it has established an air bridge between Mexico and China, a continuous “going and coming” of aircraft to transport various equipment and supply to the country during the health crisis. “They will come soon, fans, monitors, and other equipment more specialized,” said the deputy minister. It is estimated that the frequency of the air bridge to be two to three weekly flights.
Upon being questioned during the conference evening by the reason of the origin of inputs purchased, Lopez-Gatell said that by the time the shipments will only come from China because it is the country in the world where you got the biggest endowment “that allows us to solve immediate needs,”. He also said that the exploration of other markets has been extensive.
“Other countries, especially in the european region, right now they are having enormous difficulties for the own need, but also because of government regulations in some cases has restricted the output of inputs for the health of those countries”, he declared, repeating that currently the country that counts with medical supplies both in stock as availability is China.
However, during the press conference the evening of April 7 was not questioned about the purchase of masks to overprice China.
In an interview with Richard Ensor, correspondent for Mexico’s daily newspaper The Economist published in Mediumthe official of the Secretariat of Health (SSa) revealed that Mexico actually had to rebuy masks that they had been sold previously to China during the beginning of the pandemic coronavirus.
“In retrospect, maybe we shouldn’t have to have done (sell the devices),” said Lopez-Gatell. “We did not do so. But not the recompramos to 30 times (their price), was less” he added, without giving more details about the cost that you had to re-buy equipment that Mexico had already occurred.
On the quality of the products and their assessment, the official said that everything that is purchased is subject to a technical reviewappointed to a command operating that includes David León, general coordinator of Civil Protection, and Dr Ruy Lopez Ridaura, director general of the National Center of Preventive Programs and Disease Control.
Assured that it has been coordinating with specialists from the National Institute of Medical Sciences and Nutrition Salvador Zubirán identification of product catalogs, the different inputs, and which ones yes and which ones do not correspond to what is needed in the country. “Several have been discarded and are only appropriate with a guarantee of quality,” said López Gatell.
When talking about the possible use of proposals of prototypes by various citizen organizations, the assistant secretary stated that see “a critical path” that would make feasible the manufacture and use of some. However, he also asserted that not all the answers are realistic or feasible. “We have evaluated multiple prototypes and there has been gratitude to all the organizations of citizens, initiatives, academic groups, that have sent multiple proposals.”
For the evaluation of different prototypes entrepreneurs mexican is established for two and a half weeks of a technical group coordinated by the ministry of Economy, the National Institute of Medical Sciences and Nutrition, ministry of Health, and various groups of engineers. He recalled that the processes of manufacture of this type of device, given its use in health and human use, require high standards of industrial safety in the manufacturing process as the technical specifications correct.
“It has done a scan very systematic, very transparent, has been placed at the disposal of various assessments appropriate”. She also reported that institutions such as the Mexican Institute of Social Security, the Secretary of the Navy, and the National Council of Science and Technology, feature areas of simulation for this type of equipment, such as models of engineered lungs that allows you to evaluate different parameters.
The medical supplies were received by authorities of the ministry of Health in the hangar Sixth Air Group and Military Personnel, while it was accompanied by Martha Delgado, undersecretary for Multilateral Affairs and Human Rights of the SRE.
According to the federal agency, what was acquired shall be apportioned to the IMSS, to Health secretariats of the states, Petroleos Mexicanosat the Institute of Security and Social Services of State Workers (ISSSTE), to the Secretary of the Navyat the Institute of Diagnostics and Reference Epidemiology (InDRE), to the Coordinating Committee of the National Institutes of Health, and Hospitals of High Specialty, and the Administrative Body Decentralized Prevention and Social Rehabilitation.
In Mexico the number of cases of people infected by COVID-19 increased to 2,785 patients confirmed, reported the Secretariat of Health (SSa). The number of fatalities increased to 141.