coronavirus

May 11th, 2020

Yiwu market shutdown for medical supply

» , ,

This is part of the series of posts on buying medical supply from China
Part I – Buying KN95 masks from China
Part II – Buying surgical masks from China
Part III – Buying Ventilators from China
Part IV – Medical supply from China and my role
Part V – Buying Rapid Test Kits from China
Part VI – Yiwu market shutdown for medical supply

Quick translation: As ordered by Yiwu government, Yiwu market exporters are not longer allowed to trade on medical supplies like respirators, surgical masks, gowns, ventilators, temperature guns, etc starting from May 10.

Thank goodness! It is about time! Almost all the low quality PPEs and counterfeit medical supply are exported from Yiwu market.

So when FDA announced “Certain Filtering Facepiece Respirators from China May Not Provide Adequate Respiratory Protection – Letter to Health Care Providers” on May 7, reducing the numbers of China made KN95 masks from 60+ to mere 14 factories, I was not surprised. Some of my contacts are scrambling to unwind the orders or figuring out what to do with the consignment they had.


Read the rest of this entry »

April 17th, 2020

Buying Rapid Test Kits from China

» , ,

This is part of the series of posts on buying medical supply from China
Part I – Buying KN95 masks from China
Part II – Buying surgical masks from China
Part III – Buying Ventilators from China
Part IV – Medical supply from China and my role
Part V – Buying Rapid Test Kits from China
Part VI – Yiwu market shutdown for medical supply

From time to time, I get requests to find COVID-19 test kits from China. I have mostly avoided previously because I do not think I am qualified to handle it. And true enough, there are a number of reports that test kits from China are unreliable.

As time goes by, as countries are trying to get back to normal, extensive testing becomes important as I get more and more requests. I have also learned more about these test kits talking to the factories (including Wondfo, Innovita, Livzion and Bioda to name a few), industry experts and doctors from around the world. 

Now that I have a better understanding of how it works, I become convinced that there is a misunderstanding of rapid antibody test kits and particularly how to use it as a matter of public policy.

TL:DR Version : Rapid Antibody test kit is not a silver bullet to rapidly diagnose large numbers of people. It is not a 10 minutes answer to whether you have COVID-19 or not, like a pregnancy test. It is also not ready to be a DIY home test kit. 


Read the rest of this entry »

April 7th, 2020

Medical Supply from China and my role

» , ,

This is part of the series of posts on buying medical supply from China
Part I – Buying KN95 masks from China
Part II – Buying surgical masks from China
Part III – Buying Ventilators from China
Part IV – Medical supply from China and my role
Part V – Buying Rapid Test Kits from China
Part VI – Yiwu market shutdown for medical supply

Up to recently, I only dealt with friends whom I know, helping them with medical supplies from China. But recently, I got random emails from people asking for help and very often I have to explain my role and motives.

My personal priority is to help hospital frontline doctors & nurses get the correct medical supply they need. Whether that is done through the hospital direct procurement, a local-charity donation, a government or its agency, or business procurement. It would be nice to make some reasonable money along the way but that’s not my priority here. If you are working for charity or humanitarian causes, I will give you priority. 

I don’t work for a Chinese manufacturer or factories. I don’t own any inventory of medical supply. I don’t work for the Jack Ma Foundation or the Chinese government. People I am working with (on both side) prefer to get medical supply with a business contract instead of dealing with political agenda. 


Read the rest of this entry »

April 5th, 2020

Buying Ventilators from China

» , ,

This is part of the series of posts on buying medical supply from China
Part I – Buying KN95 masks from China
Part II – Buying surgical masks from China
Part III – Buying Ventilators from China
Part IV – Medical supply from China and my role
Part V – Buying Rapid Test Kits from China
Part VI – Yiwu market shutdown for medical supply

Ventilators are in high demand. It is what helps serious patients with their breathing and keeping critical-ill alive while their lung heals on its own. I wanted to write about this a few days ago but I need to calm myself; Even now, I am both angry and sad writing this.

First, let’s have some basic terminology. Ventilators come in multiple forms: Continuous Positive Airway Pressure (CPAP), BiLevel Positive Airway Pressure (BiPAP), and Auto-Titration Positive Airway Pressure, sometimes called Smart Ventilator or Auto-Mode. Ventilators also come in non-invasive and invasive mode. 

Ventilators are also used in a wide scenario from mild to life-critical situations. For simplicity, let’s use FDA classification – Class I, Class II and Class III for explanation.


Read the rest of this entry »

April 2nd, 2020

Buying surgical masks from China

» , ,

This is part of the series of posts on buying medical supply from China
Part I – Buying KN95 masks from China
Part II – Buying surgical masks from China
Part III – Buying Ventilators from China
Part IV – Medical supply from China and my role
Part V – Buying Rapid Test Kits from China
Part VI – Yiwu market shutdown for medical supply

There is another cheaper mask commonly known as Surgical Mask.

Again, let’s start with the standards: US ASTM F2100-11(2018), Europe EN 14683:2005, and China YY-0469-2011 and YY-0969-2013. YY/T series of standards in China are “Industry Standards” in contrast with GB series, the government approved standards.

These masks consist of three layers: the innermost layer absorbs moisture and body fluid from your mouth and nose; the middle layer blocks liquid/oil from either side, and the outermost layer is particle filtration. 

TL:DR : For your own personal use, buy this mask is sufficient. It is cheap and comfortable. Ask for medical mask with YY-0969-2013 standard.


Read the rest of this entry »

March 31st, 2020

Buying KN95 masks from China

» , ,

This is part of the series of posts on buying medical supply from China
Part I – Buying KN95 masks from China
Part II – Buying surgical masks from China
Part III – Buying Ventilators from China
Part IV – Medical supply from China and my role
Part V – Buying Rapid Test Kits from China
Part VI – Yiwu market shutdown for medical supply

In the last couple of weeks, with a group of friends around the world, I somehow landed in the position to help source and secure medical supplies to people (often governments) around the world from Chinese factories. Many of us are doing this pro bono and for humanitarian purposes – our goal is to help to secure proper medical equipment to frontline doctors and nurses against this war against the Coronavirus. 

Highest in demand are ICU ventilators, N95 respirator masks, PPE kits, surgical masks and gowns as well as test kits. There are also many governments whom we are in contact with who also need donations. If you know anyone who can help them, I would be happy to put you in touch. (Chinese government has offered to help but many of them choose not to receive donations from Chinese government, especially since it comes with political strings attached.)

There is a lot of confusion in the market about medical supply. In this post, I would focus on KN95 masks from China and the respective standards. I am particularly angry at unscrupulous businessmen who tried to sell non-medical grade mask to hospitals. We would lose this war if our doctors and nurses falls.

TL:DR : Almost 100% of KN95 masks currently in the market (US/EU) outside China are NOT medical grade masks. Please insist that you only buy KN95 GB 19083 FFP2 masks for frontline doctors and nurses. It will cost a bit more but it is worth it.


Read the rest of this entry »