Becoming ‘King of Ventilators’ may result in unexpected glut

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FILE – In this April 20, 2020, file photo a ventilator waits to be used for a COVID-19 patient going into cardiac arrest at St. Joseph’s Hospital in Yonkers, N.Y. An analysis of federal contracting data by The Associated Press shows the Department of Health and Human Services is now on track to exceed 100,000 new ventilators by around July 13, about a week later than the 100-day deadline Trump first gave on March 27. (AP Photo/John Minchillo, File)

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Trump pledged in late March to ensure production of 100,000 additional ventilators within 100 days to address a shortage during the coronavirus pandemic.

Since then, his administration has rushed to spend nearly $3 billion to spur U.S. manufacturers to crank them out at an unprecedented pace.

An Associated Press analysis shows that the federal government is expected to take delivery of nearly 200,000 new ventilators by the end of 2020.

But after noting unusually high death rates for coronavirus victims put on the machines, many doctors are shifting away from using them. That’s raising the unexpected prospect that the United States could soon be awash in surplus ventilators.

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