FDA Commissioner Addresses AdvaMed Board of Directors on Coronavirus

By AdvaMed | 03.18.20

Medtech's largest trade association is working with the agency to ensure healthcare workers have the necessary equipment to fight the virus.

U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) Commissioner Dr. Stephen Hahn joined a special meeting of AdvaMed’s Board of Directors on March 17 to discuss how the medical technology industry and FDA can continue their work together to ensure patients and health care providers have the medical equipment they need to address the COVID-19 pandemic.     
“I thank FDA Commissioner Hahn for taking the time to speak to leaders from across the medical technology industry about how we can best continue our work together to combat COVID-19,” said Chairman and CEO of Stryker and AdvaMed Chairman Kevin Lobo. “The medical technology community is doing everything we can to help treat and stop the spread of the coronavirus, and I appreciate the tremendous work the industry is doing.”
It was important for our board of directors to hear directly from the commissioner on all the work FDA is doing in partnership with our industry to fight COVID-19. We thank him for taking the time and for his remarkable and steady leadership during this time of crisis,” said AdvaMed President and CEO Scott Whitaker. “Dr. Hahn reiterated the importance of the medtech industry to this fight and to the American people who depend on our innovators and manufacturers. We take that responsibility very seriously. Our board meeting today focused almost exclusively on the industry’s coronavirus efforts. It was productive, exhaustive, and we look forward to continuing our work to get the medical technologies essential to this fight where they’re needed most.”
AdvaMed has been working daily with key U.S. government agenciesincluding HHS, FDA, CDC, and ASPRto identify ways the industry can help ensure that providers and patients have access to the medical technologies they need to prevent, diagnose, and treat the coronavirus. This close coordination has facilitated information sharing; anticipated, identified, and reconciled supply-chain challenges; and prompted strategic product and capital donations.

The association has also assembled a coronavirus task force focused on personnel, transportation, and supply, among other needs. The task force meets regularly to receive government, industry, and member-company status updates, and to coordinate industry response. AdvaMed has also distributed to its membership a list of personal protective equipment (PPEs) identified by the Chinese government as essential to the emergency response (e.g., protective clothing, masks, gloves, and gowns; non-contact infrared thermometers; etc.), and is partnering with authorities to increase access to those medtech products.
Since the onset of the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak, at least 31 AdvaMed member companies have donated medical products worth approximately $26.8 million and made cash donations worth $4.1 million to the China Red Cross Foundation and other medical institutions, such as hospitals and clinics in Hubei Province.