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Report: NYC Auctioned Off Stockpiled Ventilators Pre-2016

Believe it or not, at one point, New York was fairly prepared for a pandemic outbreak in the city.

The major problem the city is now having, though, is a need for respirators, something that could have possibly been avoided had the city not auctioned off its stockpile.

Losing the Stockpile

If there is one definitive fact that has come out of all of this, it is that we know over the last decade or so, Democrats treated stockpiles as luxuries rather than necessities.

Much like President Bush did for the country, former New York Mayor Mike Bloomberg built a stockpile of ventilators for the city of New York in the event of a pandemic.

Since the stockpile did consist of some older ventilators that would have needed to be maintained since they are no longer in production, the city decided to get rid of them rather than maintain them.

Dr. Issac Weisfuse, the former deputy commissioner of the city’s health department, stated, “We tried to fill in the gap as best we could.”

Michael Lanza, the current assistant press secretary for the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, stated, “This was beyond our control but had a direct impact on cost and viability of maintaining a stockpile.”

According to the report, the result was the city auctioning off the ventilators it had in its stockpile.

That is not necessarily a bad thing if the money would have been used to buy new ventilators, but it clearly was not.

When this all took place is not 100 percent clear, but the report did state that it happened before 2016, so it would appear the fault will fall squarely in the lap of Mayor de Blasio.

Knew of the Shortfall

One of the reasons Bloomberg was stockpiling was due to a 2006 report pointed to a massive shortfall of ventilators of an outbreak such as the one we are having now occurred.

The report stated, “Using the same assumptions for a projected 1918-like pandemic, produces a projected shortfall of between 2,036 and 9,454 ventilators.

“Based upon these numbers alone, it is important to consider augmenting existing ventilator capacity for adults, children, and neonates in NYC.”

Mayor de Blasio, to this point, has not answered any requests for comments.

To read the full report on ProPublica, click here.

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