Special Bulletin: Public-private Effort Launched to Help Distribute Existing Ventilators to High-need Areas of the U.S.

Effort includes online inventory of ventilators and supplies

A new public-private effort was announced today to aid in distributing ventilators to critical areas in the fight against COVID-19. Leaders from the AHA and several hospitals and health systems participated in the announcement of the "Dynamic Ventilator Reserve" during a meeting at the White House.

The projected shortage of ventilators in specific geographic areas as the United States battles the pandemic is affecting regions of the country unevenly as rates for infection, hospitalization and intensive care unit utilization vary. Ventilator equipment may sit idle in some areas with lower infection rates while other areas are stretched beyond capacity.

A collaborative voluntary effort led by a group of U.S. hospitals and health systems has created an online inventory of ventilators and associated supplies, such as tubing and filters, to support the overall needs of combatting the COVID-19 pandemic. Hospitals and health systems will input into the database available equipment that they are able to lend to others in the country. Providers are then able to access this virtual inventory as their need for ventilators increases.

"America's hospitals and health systems always stand ready to care. This voluntary effort is a great example of their commitment to help one another, and as well as their patients and communities," said AHA President and CEO Rick Pollack. "We appreciate the leadership of the health care systems that have stepped forward and our work with the Administration to find innovative solutions to ensure the best care for our patients."

The AHA will manage the inventory with full transparency to those participating in the effort. The AHA will work with the Federal Emergency Management Agency when this virtual inventory might be needed to supplement the national emergency stockpile.

Hospitals and health systems are able to participate in the network at various points in time, depending on the infection rates in the regions they serve.

How to Get Involved: Hospitals and health systems that would like to participate in the virtual network can get more information by contacting the AHA at 800-424-4301.