Buchanan calls on president to help get U.S.-made face masks distributed

U.S. Rep. Vern Buchanan (R-FL) urged President Joe Biden to take immediate federal action to help American companies distribute millions of protective face masks during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

“I write to urge you to do everything in your power to support American manufacturers and their continued efforts to produce and distribute critical N95 masks amid the ongoing health crisis,” Rep. Buchanan wrote in a Feb. 17 letter sent to the president.

At the height of the coronavirus pandemic last year, many U.S. companies switched gears and altered regular business operations to produce desperately needed N95 masks to help protect against the spread of the coronavirus, wrote Rep. Buchanan.

“Now, even after getting their masks officially approved for use by the federal government, these companies are struggling to get their masks out to the public despite the continuing demand due to bureaucratic red tape,” the congressman wrote. “And some of those companies are even in danger of failing as a result of this.”

Rep. Buchanan noted that the coronavirus pandemic has exposed “how dangerously reliant” the U.S. medical supply chain is on China and other countries. “U.S. companies should not be forced to send these desperately needed supplies out of the country due to bureaucratic red tape,” he wrote. “Working to ensure these companies can quickly and easily get these masks to those in need, especially our first responders, is a critically important issue everyone can agree on.”