Wednesday, January 26

Covid-19. Masks, gloves: France wants to “guarantee supply in the event of a new global pandemic”

Objective of the circular “relating to the securing of the procurement process for critical supplies and equipment” made public on Thursday: “to guarantee supply in the event of a new global pandemic” in terms of protection against contamination. The text, dated December 15, was sent to all regional health authorities (ARS) which oversee the management of health establishments.

The some 3,000 French hospitals and clinics are now encouraged to buy their masks, gloves and protective equipment against contamination in France and Europe.

Initially, the equipment identified as critical are sanitary gloves, as well as surgical masks and FFP2 masks, more airtight and more filtering, in the shape of a duckbill, which protect both the wearer and those around them.

“Heavy penalties” envisaged

To promote the purchase of locally produced products, the specifications of the purchasing communities will have to be more demanding in terms of compliance with European standards, quality control of masks, minimum stock levels, the carbon footprint of masks and delivery times. , indicates the circular. “Heavy penalties” will be considered in the event of a high rate of non-compliance with the technical quality requirements of the equipment, or the specified delivery times.

These purchasing methods are made applicable “with immediate effect to all public health establishments and public pooled purchasing operators intervening for the benefit or on behalf of health establishments” specifies the text.

“Between summer 2020 and summer 2021, 97% of calls for tenders were allocated to import masks, ordered mainly by communities” underlined Christian Curiel, president of the French union of mask manufacturers F2M and Managing Director of the company Prism, based in Frontignan (Hérault), welcoming this initiative, requested for more than a year by French manufacturers and already implemented in other European countries.

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