March 24, 2020
Need for domestic production line of PPE – Louise O’Reilly TD

Sinn Féin health spokesperson Deputy Louise O’Reilly has reiterated her call to ensure we have a domestic production line of vital Personnel Protective Equipment for our frontline health workers.

Speaking this afternoon, Teachta O’Reilly said:

“There is no doubt that we need to ensure continuity in our stock of Personnel Protective Equipment for frontline health workers during the COVID-19 crisis.

“The HSE have been working very hard to source additional supply from China and other countries.

“New supplies are due to arrive in the coming days and weeks and that is extremely welcome.

“We must also ensure that we have a continuous domestic production line of various items of PPE so that we can replenish stocks as quickly as possible. 

“Yesterday we saw how O’Neill’s, the sportswear company, has refocused its production lines to produce scrubs and PPE for the NHS in the north of Ireland.

“This is a welcome development on two fronts; it ensures employment and it guarantees a domestic supply of some necessary items of protective equipment.

“I am sure there are other companies out there who could refocus their production lines to deliver PPE. I would call on any company that believes they can do this to reach out to myself or to the HSE to find out what equipment is needed and if they can produce it.

“Around 208 cases (25%) of the virus so far are associated with healthcare workers. We need to guarantee that they have the necessary PPE to ensure they are protected at the frontline. 

“The HSE must also engage with workers like home carers who are concerned about their own need for PPE.

“A reliable, domestic production line of various items of PPE would go a long way to helping ensure our health staff have the protective equipment they need.”

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