The COVID-19 pandemic has offered our nation with new and distinctive challenges that require all ranges of presidency, and all aspects of the healthcare system, to work collectively. It has pushed our limits as to what’s potential. And it uncovered various flaws in our pandemic preparedness and response capabilities.
The alarming scarcity of private protecting tools our well being system encountered represents an incredible problem that has been a decade within the making. For too lengthy, the U.S. has relied on nations like China to provide PPE and demanding prescription drugs.
China has come to dominate the worldwide market within the PPE manufacturing. Chinese language firms have low prices, excessive demand around the globe and are supported of their efforts by its Communist authorities. Even earlier than the pandemic, the Peterson Institute for Worldwide Economics estimated that China already exported extra respirators, surgical masks, medical goggles and protecting gear than the remainder of the world mixed.
Make no mistake: China’s efforts on this regard are strategic. The extra nations around the globe that depend on them for in-demand merchandise throughout a time of disaster, the extra affect they’ve to advertise their world agenda.
We’ve seen an analogous pattern with the pharmaceutical trade, with drug manufacturing slowly shifting out of the U.S. As of August 2019, solely 28% of the manufacturing services making lively pharmaceutical components, or APIs, to produce the U.S. had been in America. The remaining 72% had been abroad, and 13% had been in China, which has doubled its variety of registered services making APIs between 2010 and 2019.
U.S. producers are struggling to compete, and we’ve allowed it to occur. As an alternative of constructing our personal provide chain of American-made PPE and prescription drugs, we turned a blind eye to the issue and accepted China’s dominance.
Not solely did our reliance on China fail us throughout this pandemic, it has broader implications for our security and financial success.
In July, Federal Emergency Administration Company Administrator Pete Gaynor referred to as our reliance on abroad suppliers “a nationwide safety challenge,” and testified to Congress that, “PPE and lifesaving tools is simply as vital as constructing an plane provider. We have to have that capability right here in the USA. We can’t depend on peer rivals to handle our future.”
He’s proper. We will’t overlook that counting on China for important provides means placing our well being and safety within the fingers of a nation that desires to be the dominant world energy. Their success will depend on our failure. And because the Communist Celebration controls each firm in China, each time we purchase their provides we’re supporting a regime that’s stealing our know-how and mental property, increase their navy to compete with us, abusing human rights, stripping Hong Kong residents of their freedoms and threatening Taiwan.
We’ve to face up and say that we, as People and freedom-loving individuals, are higher than this.
President Donald Trump did the appropriate factor by enacting the Protection Manufacturing Act to compel U.S. firms to start manufacturing PPE. However now we have an extended technique to go.
We have to construct up home manufacturing. As Florida’s governor, I targeted on holding taxes low for producers and eradicated the gross sales tax on capital tools. Within the Senate, I’m working to go a invoice that may assist construct the nationwide stockpile of products from American-based producers and take away China from the U.S. provide chain.
All of us, whether or not within the healthcare trade or not, want to acknowledge the specter of China and begin taking actual steps to cease counting on our adversaries and give attention to provides and merchandise “Made in America.”
The way forward for our nation and the well being and security of our individuals rely upon our motion.
The 116th Congress: Policymaking Amid the Pandemic