Interview – Sunrise, Channel 7
10 April 2020
Subject: Topics: Australian made ventilators amid COVID-19
Matt Doran: Australia's supply of emergency ventilators is set to rapidly expand after the Federal Government reached a $31 million agreement with Victorian technology company Grey Innovation. This deal is set to deliver 2000 new ventilators by the end of July which will, of course, be essential for treating coronavirus patients in intensive care.
For more I'm joined by the Minister for Industry, Science and Technology, Karen Andrews. Minister, good morning. This is such an important agreement. Tell me about it.
Karen Andrews: Yeah. Good morning. Yes, it is a very important agreement. It’s between the Federal Government and Grey Innovation to manufacture, right here in Australia, an additional 2000 ventilators. So they’re the invasive ventilators that will be used in ICUs. So it’s a great story of Aussie ingenuity, of Australian manufacturers stepping up and delivering for Australia.
Matt Doran: We've seen them become vital around the world. So this is fantastic news.
Will the end of July be soon enough? Because there are reports this morning that doctors will be given a framework on who they should give ventilators to. That’s if the pandemic gets worse as feared.
Karen Andrews: So we currently have very good stocks of ventilators right across Australia. We have over 4000 ventilators. Currently, there are 35 people who are in ICU with an invasive ventilator at the moment, so we have more than adequate stocks. What we’re doing is preparing for the very worst-case scenario, so that’s why it’s important that we’ve worked with Australian manufacturers to make sure they can lock in behind us and start producing more ventilators for us.
Matt Doran: Minister, it’s an important deal, it’ll be a relief to so many doctors across the country. Congratulations and it's really nice to see some rain there on the Gold Coast - quite rare.
Karen Andrews: It certainly is and a very happy Easter to all of your viewers this morning.
Matt Doran: Happy Easter to you too.