The protective equipment debate has revolved during the corona crisis, mainly around masks and respirators.
Less attention has been paid to the fact that there is a shortage of other equipment as well.
- The situation is better for respirators than for protective jackets, which are currently in a weak situation, Minister of Social Affairs and Health Aino-Kaisa Pekonen (left) tells IS by e-mail.
According to Helsingin Sanomat, at Malmi Hospital, corona patients have been instructed to treat impervious protective clothing without protective gloves, protective headgear and splashes.
According to Pekonen, the situation in the field shows “the acute need and the need to replenish stocks throughout the epidemic”.
Pekonen is responsible for preparedness and related procurement at the Ministry of Social Affairs and Health, and Krista Kiuru (sd), Minister for Family and Basic Services, is responsible for the adequacy of equipment in the field of social and health care. IS did not reach Kiuru.
The Ministry of Employment and the Economy, in turn, is responsible for the operations of the Security of Supply Center and the start-up of domestic production. The Ministry of Employment and the Economy has two ministers, Minister of Economic Affairs Mika Lintilä (center) and Minister of Labor Tuula Haatainen (sd).
Petri Peltonen, Undersecretary of State at the Ministry of Employment and the Economy, spoke this week about the risk factors related to the start-up of domestic production, such as the issue of certification and problems related to the availability of raw materials. IS did not reach Lintilä.
Pekonen refers to the expert assessment that the field's stocks and new purchases are sufficient to ensure the availability of protective equipment for health care use until domestic production is put into operation.
- In addition to domestic production, we must continue to procure from abroad. Procurement is primarily the responsibility of actors in the field of social and health care, and ultimately the Center for Security of Care. There is also close co-operation with the business community and the Foreign Ministry's embassy network.
According to Pekonen, hospital districts, municipalities and other actors' own procurements must work, domestic production must start and the Center for Security of Supply must succeed in its procurements.
In February-March, Pekonen made it clear that Finland's preparations have been extremely good and that Finland is in a good situation in international comparison.
- I have said explicitly that Finland is a good precautionary level of international activities such as comparison, and the National Emergency Supply Agency has not been in many countries. No one or any country could have prepared for such a situation in such a way that the protective equipment would have been sufficient without additional purchases. The need for and consumption of protective equipment has been exceptionally high, which has made the adequacy of equipment in some places tough. Undoubtedly, after this crisis, it is worth looking at updating the pandemic plan and assessing the state of our preparedness, Pekonen says.