US Struggles to Fill Requests for Protective Gear

The Strategic National Stockpile was created in 1999 to respond to bombings and biological, chemical and nuclear attacks. It has never confronted anything on the scale of the COVID-19 pandemic.

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Image via AP Photo/Elaine Thompson, File

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SALEM, Ore. (AP) — The U.S. government is rushing protective equipment to states, packing dozens of flights and hundreds of trucks with supplies for medical workers who will be on the front lines of the coronavirus fight. But the pandemic has exposed some of the stockpile’s shortcomings: The cache isn’t designed to be a long-term solution to monumental demand, and some state officials are complaining that the deliveries are falling far short of what’s needed…

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