Vice President Mike Pence on Thursday announced that thousands of ventilators have been located and will be converted to treat coronavirus patients.
At a Thursday press briefing held by members of the Coronavirus Task Force, Pence said the machines were identified after working with health care providers and suppliers around the country.
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“We’re encouraged to learn that we’ve literally identified tens of thousands of ventilators that can be converted to treat patients,” Pence said. “And we remain increasingly confident that we will have the ventilators that we need as the coronavirus makes its way across America.”
Pence also announced an increase of production of N95 masks for medical professionals to use as they treat patients.
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“We’re encouraged to see companies like Honeywell and 3M, that I visited a few short weeks ago, take advantage of the changes in the law last night that allow the sale of industrial masks directly to hospitals,” Pence said. “Those companies have now greatly increased by the tens of millions their production of so-called N95 masks that will give our health care workers the protection that they need to administer to those who are dealing with the symptoms or the disease of coronavirus.”
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Earlier in the press briefing, President Trump announced progress in the testing of a possible vaccine, as well as the coming availability of treatment including a malaria drug that could potentially help those already infected.