Huge portions of used medical gloves shipped from Thailand to US

Be the first of used medical gloves have been shipped from Thailand as shady operators search to cash in on Covid-fuelled demand for personal protective gear, or PPE, in accordance with a report from CNN following a months-long investigation. With demand having skyrocketed around the world, an underground industry based around reusing PPE has emerged in Southeast Asia, with the shoddy medical tools having in turn found its method into the worldwide supply chain. According to the CNN investigation, tens of tens of millions of dirty, second-hand nitrile gloves have reached the United States, with the potential to place frontline healthcare staff and sufferers in danger.
Criminal investigations are actually underway in both the United States and Thailand, nonetheless the true scale of the problem could also be far higher than it seems at first blush. As countries all over the world battle to maintain up with PPE demand, international shortages are set to remain an issue within the coming years, giving rise to fly-by-night outfits making an attempt to make a quick buck. Adding to the problems confronted by US authorities, import regulations associated to protective medical tools had been temporarily suspended in the wake of the pandemic, and remain so to this day.
As one professional advised CNN, nitrile gloves are the “most harmful commodity on Earth proper now”. Meanwhile, a US businessman, who placed an order for about US$2 million of gloves from Thai-based firm Paddy the Room, described receiving washed and recycled gloves, a few of which “had bloodstains”, noting he “couldn’t imagine my eyes”. The gloves ultimately discovered their way to a landfill, with the businessman notifying US authorities.
CNN cites a Food and Drug Administration statement that import under the relaxed rules is just allowed “as lengthy as the gloves conform to the consensus requirements and labelling cited in the guidance and where the gloves don’t create an undue risk”. However, lack of physical checks at US ports has created the potential for PPE to slip through the cracks.
While the FDA did send an alert to its port staff that shipments from Paddy the Room required detention with out physical examination, this occurred 5 months after two US businessmen had raised the alarm. Department of Homeland Security officers confirmed to CNN that there’s an ongoing felony investigation into the corporate.
Thai FDA brokers raided the Paddy the Room last December, arresting the owner of the warehouse, however were unable to deliver expenses towards the tenant, a Hong Kong resident. The company, in the meantime, simply relocated its operations.
Deputy Secretary-General of the Thai FDA, Supattra Boonserm, informed CNN that “they simply moved to another location, to another warehouse.”

“And why is that? Because the demand for gloves remains to be high. There are still clients waiting out there.”

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