Wuhan is in crisis.
As a result, hospitals are overwhelmed with patients, leading to a shortage of beds, medical staff, face masks, and rubber gloves.
Thankfully, one country is lending a help handing to the little city in need.
M’sia Glove Manufacturers Donating 18 Million Rubber Gloves to Wuhan
The Malaysian government will be sending 18 million medical gloves to healthcare workers in Wuhan due to the escalating coronavirus outbreak.
Primary Industries Minister Teresa Kok announced this on Friday (31 Jan) during a special press conference at her ministry.
“At present, hospitals in Wuhan, the Central Chinese city, at the crux of the coronavirus outbreak, are calling out for much needed protective medical supplies such as masks, suits and gloves, as supplies run low.”
“The medical gloves, both natural rubber and nitrile, will be sent to China in batches with the first shipment being already on its way to Wuhan,” she said.
The actual donation will come from the Malaysian Rubber Export Promotion Council and several glove manufacturers.
Ms Kok said that her ministry had obtained the cooperation of these companies on the initiative.
She added that these manufacturers did this even though it was during the Chinese New Year period.
Leading producer of medical gloves
You may not know this, but Malaysia is the world’s leading producer of medical gloves, with approximately 180 billion pieces exported worldwide annually.
In 2014, Malaysia sent more than 20 million medical rubber gloves to five African nations (Liberia, Sierra Leone, Guinea, Nigeria and Congo) when they were battling the Ebola virus.
“Malaysian glove industry players are prepared to be at the forefront of supplying high-quality medical gloves to the world, especially in critical times such as this to battle against the outbreak and the current pandemic”, Ms Kok said.
Malaysia has eight confirmed cases of the coronavirus, all of which involve Chinese nationals.
So, how do medical gloves actually help?
Well, for one, washing hands isn’t enough, especially if you’re working in a hospital. While good hand hygiene is very important, adding sterile gloves to the mix provides patients with a layer of protection from bacteria and viruses that may have been missed during the washing process.
Secondly, gloves are a barrier against bodily fluids. While scientists do not know enough about the Wuhan virus, they suspect that it’s transmitted through large droplets. Thus, these gloves prevent us from getting this bacteria on our hands, which is especially important if you’re working with many patients.
A generous donation
This donation by the Malaysian government is certainly a generous one. It’s a huge help for a city that has been overwhelmed logistically by a deadly disease.
We can only applaud Malaysia for this generous act and hope that it contributes to the fight against the virus.