Transcript for FEMA administrator reacts to long testing lines
For more now let's bring in the man in charge of coordinating the federal response to this FEMA administrator Peter Gaynor. Good morning to you, Mr. Gaynor. I want to start with where we are right now and what our team laid out. Black and brown communities hit especially hard. Delays in testing. Cases rising in 39 states. You testified on capitol hill yesterday that the United States continues to crush this virus. How exactly are we crushing it? Well, my comments were I think for all of us to crush the virus we need to do four basic things and I think the president and the administration has been clear on that. Wear a mask, wear a mask not for yourself but the person that's next to you. Have good hygiene, wash your hands, use social distancing and keep out of crowded bars and overcrowded dining rooms. If you can do those four basic things we can all crush the virus. Obviously it has increased in the sun belt and we're continuing to address those challenges with states like Florida, Texas, Arizona and California. One of the realities that you addressed on capitol hill is this shortage of ppe protective gear for our frontline workers. You said we have many months to go until we can make enough to supply the demand. I think hearing that a lot of people would say we are six months into this pandemic. How is it possible that we are still talking about shortages in the most crucial gear to keep our frontline health care workers safe? Yeah, so, you know, we are in a much better place with ppe today than we were back in March and April. There's no doubt about it. But the fact is, we don't make ppe in the United States, the majority of ppe is made overseas in places like Asia, we're trying to bring the production of ppe back to the united States, asking those producers like 3M to produce more. New producers to change and expand lines from some other item to ppe. That is ongoing. We just recently talked to all the state emergency management directors. Most states across the country have 90, 120 days of ppe stockpiled so in a much better place, however, there may be places that have high cases, high hospitalizations that do have some shortages. We're in a much better place and we can move ppe from around the country to where it's needed the Sir, it's not that there may be. There are. Dollar doctors and nurses who do not have gear on the front lines. That has been made clear to us in our reporting and news outlets around the country. For doctors and nurses watching can you as the head of FEMA guarantee these doctors and nurses that they will have the gear that they need to do their job safely? If there is a hospital out there that does not have ppe, contact their state emergency manager, contact their state health director and we will get ppe to you. Finally, sir, we are in hurricane season. It is expected to be an especially active one. Are you confident FEMA is prepared to handle the hurricane season and global pandemic simultaneously? We are, we are. And I say that because we've been at covid-19 for months now. The agency has been up and running dealing with covid-19. But we also have been preparing for the hurricane season. We knew it was coming. We put out operational guidance to those in the hurricane prone locations across the united States to make sure they adapt their plans and their procedures to deal with not only a hurricane but a hurricane while dealing with covid-19, so we've encouraged exercises and planning. I just came back from a gulf coast tour last week checking on progress from state and locals. Really it is positive that people have embraced not only dealing with covid-19 but embraced being ready for the hurricane season which we're in today. Administrator Gaynor, thank you so much for your time this Michael. You're welcome.
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