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Sat Apr 18, 2020, 04:59 PM

Muddled thinking punctures plan for British ventilator: yet another Tory screw-up in procurement

The full article is in the FT - following the link from one of the author's twitter thread on it allowed me past their usual firewall. Direct link, and if that doesn't work:


Foster's thread is a good summary - basically, the non-medical companies (Rolls-Royce, Dyson etc.) said they didn't want to design complicated medical equipment for which they had no expertise:

"MakeUK boss @Makeuk_Sphipson told Today we'd be better making existing stuff under license.

@PenlonGlobal head of products says it is "unrealistic" to make from scratch"

and they were at first given a decades-old spec that really wouldn't do the job. So that's why some, like Renault/Red Bull, have built a machine the medics don't want. The end reads:

"Initially when those concerns were pushed up the chain, the reply came back "that's what the customer wants".

Which begs a question. WHO was the customer?

Not the docs. Not the regulator. Not the patients.

The only answer that fits, is the Government. The politicians. EESH

It takes time for the penny to drop in Whitehall and the Cabinet Office - but by April 10, check out the 'amended' spec that says “the greater proportion of devices” for treating coronavirus would need to be capable of supporting “spontaneous breathing modes”"
"So no harm done? No. Not really.

What this speaks to is the deeply worrying tendency of this crop of politicians to think they know best.

The 'cut-the-crap' 'how-hard-can-it-be?' attitudes that leads to headless decision making. It's embarrassing.

Over the last week I've had SO many conversations with docs and experts that remind of the conversations I had with logisticians, port operators, customs clearers over #Brexit.

Expert people TEARING their hair out at the willful numbskullery of the people at the top.
My inbox is full of people who daren't speak on record but are SEETHING at the way they were treated.

People who worked 20-hour days for weeks; gave freely of their time, energy and spirit for nothing. "

End of the article:

However, an insider with direct knowledge of the process said that the basic products are now unlikely to be cleared for use in the UK against Covid-19. 

“Pretty much all the basic new designs are not going to get through the Covid approval process. The government spin is the ‘clinical need’ changed, but the reality is that it was always misguided to think you could develop and create these ventilators,” the person said. “Starting the process in this way was unwise. It has gradually become more sensible.”

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Reply Muddled thinking punctures plan for British ventilator: yet another Tory screw-up in procurement (Original post)
muriel_volestrangler Apr 2020 OP
T_i_B Apr 2020 #1

Response to muriel_volestrangler (Original post)

Sun Apr 19, 2020, 04:26 AM

1. When it comes to manufacturing and supply chains...

Politicians (and the people who vote them in) know absolutely nothing.

What's worse is that they are usually bored by the details at best and wilfully ignorant at worst. Which leads to disastrous policy decisions like leaving the EU.

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