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Pritzker outlines state’s effort to acquire more protective equipment as COVID-19 death toll passes 300

Pritzker outlines state’s effort to acquire more protective equipment as COVID-19 death toll passes 300

Gov. JB Pritzker said his administration’s efforts to acquire personal protective equipment has been able to offset a lack of support from the federal government.

To date, the state has been able to procure millions of supplies for healthcare facilities and workers, including nearly 10 million N95 masks, over 14 million KN95 masks, 7 million surgical masks, 22 million disposable general use masks, over 19 million gloves, over 5 million face shields and over 3 million gowns.

The state acquisitions come as its total delivery of federal supplies equated to 367,700 N95 masks, 1.1 million surgical masks, nearly 693,000 gloves, 174,000 face shields, 142,000 surgical gowns and 4,000 coveralls. Pritzker said that was a fraction of their total request.

“If we had relied on the White House and its obligation to fulfill our needs from the (Strategic National Stockpile), our state and nearly every state in the United States would come up short and could not protect our healthcare workers and our first responders,” he said.

Pritzker said, as of now, health officials are predicting a 10-day burn rate of personal protective equipment of roughly 1.5 million N95 masks, 25 million gloves, 4.4 million gowns and 700,000 surgical masks.

That does not take into account the supplies that will be necessary for healthcare workers at the McCormick Place field hospital.

“When you compare our federal shipments to our burn rate, the product we receive from the federal stockpile will only last a handful of days in this multi-month battle,” Pritzker said. “It’s our own state procurement initiative that is making the difference.”

He added that, as of Monday, the state is OK regarding ventilators. He said they are closely monitoring the number of hospitalizations and the number of patients who need ICU care to determine when more will be needed.

Pritzker said he has talked with companies such as General Motors and Ford Motor Company about acquiring more ventilators, as well as providers in other medical fields such as dentists who may have supplies that are not currently being used.

Officials also urged residents Monday to remain indoors as much as possible in the coming days. Temperatures are expected to reach the 70s across the state Tuesday.

“If people congregate tomorrow, we will set the state back in our fight against COVID-19,” said Illinois Department of Public Health Director Dr. Ngozi Ezike.

Meanwhile, state officials reported 33 more deaths Monday, bringing the state’s total to 307. There were 1,006 new cases, bringing the total number of confirmed cases to 12,262 in 73 counties. There have been 62,942 individuals tested in Illinois.


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