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Partnering with our Allies to Fight COVID-19

March 23, 2020

Key Points:

-The federal government did an emergency international mission recently to receive 500,000 swabs and sample kits used in the COVID-19 testing process in order to amplify diagnostic testing supplies in the U.S.

-The supplies came from Italy and are now in Memphis, Tennessee, a prominent distribution center for FedEx.

The details:

Working together, the Department of Health and Human Services and the Department of Defense coordinated an international mission to receive testing swabs from a manufacturing center in Italy that isn’t able to ship their products due to travel restrictions and border closures. During this mission, this Italian company was able to provide 500,000 testing swabs, which are now in the heartland of America and ready for nationwide distribution. Secretary Alex Azar said that this is “exactly the kind of public-private cooperation and whole-of-government approach that has characterized the Trump Administration’s response to COVID-19.” The Secretary said that “thanks to this quick coordination among agencies and the private sector, private diagnostic companies will have the ability to provide rapid tests for hundreds of thousands of more Americans.”