#Canada; #CriticalMedicalProtectiveMeasures; #U.S., #N95Masks; #DefenseProductionAct
Ottawa, Apr 3 (Canadian-Media): With known cases in Canada coronavirus reaching to 12,389, Canada is facing challenges in securing critical medical protective measures including N95 masks from the U.S., media reports said.
N95 masks. Image credit: Twitter handle
The issue of the shortage of protective gear for health-care workers in Canada was discussed by Canada's Prime Minister Justin Trudeau with the country's premiers on Thursday and again Friday amid concern if Canada would get the equipment it needs from abroad, including from the United States.
Speaking outside Rideau Cottage on Friday, Trudeau said his government has clarified to the Americans the importance of the flow of essential supplies, products and services both ways between Canada and the United States every day, highlighting the example of nurses from Windsor, Ont., who travel to Detroit to work.
"These are things that Americans rely on and it would be a mistake to create blockages or reduce the amount of back-and-forth trade of essential goods and services, including medical goods, across our border," said Trudaeu.
By invoking the Defense Production Act (DPA), the U.S. White House had asked Medical device manufacturer 3M, the Minnesota-based company to stop exporting United States-produced N95 masks to other countries, including Canada.
3M company warned U.S. that stopping mask exports could prompt retaliatory measures that could hurt the U.S.
"There are, however, significant humanitarian implications of ceasing respirator supplies to health-care workers in Canada and Latin America, where we are a critical supplier of respirators," the company said in its statement.
Passed in 1950, DPA grants the president the authority to expand industrial production of key materials or products for national security and other reasons.
Trump also ordered 3M to stop making N95 masks that are destined for Canadian or Latin American customers, and instead keep them in the U.S.