Oregon takes the lead in states sharing resources during the COVID-19 pandemic
SALEM — On April 4, 2020, Oregon Governor Kate Brown announced that Oregon would be sending 140 of the state’s ventilators to New York.
“New York needs more ventilators, and we are answering their call for help,” said Governor Brown on Twitter. “We’ll be sending 140 ventilators to help NY because Oregon is in a better position right now. We must do all that we can to help those on the front lines of this response.”
The state of New York has more than 100,000 confirmed cases of COVID-19, the respiratory illness caused by the coronavirus. As of April 4, a staggering 3,500 New Yorkers had died due to coronavirus-related illness, and as such, the state is facing shortages of life-saving medical equipment.
After repeated efforts to procure more equipment from private sources and the federal government, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo made plans to ask states to share the limited ventilators that have been already distributed.
“We are so grateful to Governor Brown and the people of Oregon,” Governor Cuomo wrote back via Twitter. “On behalf of the people of NY, I thank you and rest assured that NY will repay the favor when Oregon needs it.”
Oregon received 140 ventilators from the national stockpile on March 27. Since those ventilators have been loaned to New York, Oregon still has 762 ventilators available, enough for the current number of COVID-19 patients in the state.
Social-distancing measures are helping to ensure that Oregon hospitals have enough ventilators for the moment, but Governor Cuomo has pledged that if Oregon finds itself in need of ventilators, New York and other states will respond to our call for assistance.
“Oregon doesn’t have everything we need to fight COVID-19 — we need more PPE and testing,” said Governor Brown. “But we can help today with ventilators. We are all in this together.”