A spokesperson for the Ministry of Health (VWS) confirmed this to de Volkskrant. The spokesperson says 32.8 million mouth covers, which have been omitted from official stock numbers since this week, have yet to be destroyed.
Mouth caps were purchased last year. Then the House of Representatives urged the widespread purchase of so-called personal protective equipment, including mouthguards. This was done by the National Resources Consortium (LCH). The purchasing organization of the government is still seeing if another destination can be found outside of health care.
According to the newspaper, the total value of the shipment is about 70 million euros, but the ministry cannot determine whether this estimate is correct.
Chinese face masks got an exemption from the European Commission during the Corona crisis, so they can be used in health care. It was already known that the exemption would be temporary.
Destruction ‘a redundant sin’
Sywert van Lienden describes refusal of mouth caps as “a sin, unnecessary and polluting to the environment when destroyed. The National Tool Association was aware of this on order and also after delivery in the summer of 2020.” Van Linden says he put forward “solutions” that could have prevented this. However, there was no interest in it.” According to him, the National Instrument Association could have foreseen the situation by handing over mouth coverings to healthcare in time. “Hopefully they will find a good destination for that.”
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