personal protective equipment

Increased Demand for PPE Caused Disruption in PPE Supply Chain

The deadly coronavirus pandemic has hit the entire world adversely and has impacted over 100,000 people globally. From a business perspective, its effects have been felt not just in the healthcare industry but across various industry verticals due to its impact on the personal protective equipment (PPE) supply chain. The increased demand for PPE has not only impacted industries but also personal protective equipment manufacturers. The PPE suppliers in the USA and other high-demand countries are finding it difficult to meet the increasing demand for PPE and other medical supplies.

Since the outbreak, demand for face masks, isolation gowns, surgical gloves, and other PPE gears has increased by a factor of 100 and prices have skyrocketed due to the source of the coronavirus originating from China. This created a severe disruption in the PPE supply worldwide.

As the whole world is gripped by the fear of getting infected by the deadly virus, the abnormally widespread use of PPE outside patient care by common citizens trying to protect themselves from COVID-19 has caused this supply disruption. Personal protective equipment manufacturers and bulk PPE suppliers in the USA are also exploiting this opportunity by raising the price of PPE, especially medical-grade N95 masks by a factor of 20.

Demand is on the rise and the Chinese market remains undersupplied. This drastic supply shortfall has led a few countries to reduce their exports to China in order to supply to their own people.

The huge demand for N95 masks is also impacting the supply for industrial PPE. PPE manufacturing companies have shifted their focus towards manufacturing face masks and surgical gloves that can prevent the transmission of the virus and have stopped manufacturing other PPEs such as safety glasses, welding helmets, and chemical-resistant gloves.

Need for Increased Production and Emergence of New PPE Manufacturing Companies

It’s very difficult for personal protective equipment manufacturers to increase PPE production quickly and on a large-scale to meet a sudden surge in demand. As the outbreak claims lives each passing day, Chinese authorities have increased the number of manufacturing lines domestically. To address the increased demand for PPE, over 3,000 Chinese companies including energy giants, carmakers, diaper companies, and underwear manufacturing companies have now started producing surgical masks, protective clothing, thermometers, and medical devices.

As the world’s global hub for manufacturing shutdowns in China, this caused supply chain disruptions for PPE manufacturing companies, especially in the USA, that rely on raw materials and products from China. Thus, the world is facing a global shortage of face masks, gloves, and other PPE gears, especially for healthcare centers that are facing challenges in treating the infected patients with the limited supply of PPE.

Important Measures to Cater to the Demand Perimeters

  • To meet the global rising global demand for PPE apparels, the WHO estimates that PPE manufacturing companies must increase production by 40 percent.
  • Governments should ease restrictions on the export and distribution of PPEs and other medical supplies.
  • Rational and appropriate use of PPE in healthcare settings, and the effective management of supply chains.
  • Engage with foreign suppliers to meet the PPE supply-demand gap.
  • Develop strategies to optimize the supply of PPE during the COVID-19 pandemic.

To Conclude

PPE manufacturing companies empowered with technologically advanced next-gen supply-chain management software with real-time connectivity may be able to deal better with this adverse situation. Moreover, personal protective equipment companies should consider increasing production as quickly as possible while not hiking the prices of essential PPE apparels such as N95 respirators, medical-grade gloves and protective clothing.

The coronavirus outbreak has exposed major vulnerabilities in the PPE supply chain. Unless this global pandemic is eradicated, the cloud of uncertainty will continue to loom over the well-sustained PPE market worldwide.

Realizing the need to ensure a continuous PPE supply to meet the demand-supply gap, Co-Defend implements proven strategies to optimize supply-chain management to ensure continuous supply of PPE and other medical supplies. As one of the leading bulk PPE suppliers in the USA, Co-Defend has a large network of trusted and authorized PPE suppliers in Asia that sell high-quality, medical-grade PPE and medical supplies at an affordable price rate. If you’re looking to buy PPE from a reliable PPE supplier, Co-defend is your go-to place! Contact us to place bulk orders for PPE and medical devices.


Q.1. How do you ensure personal protective equipment is safe and effective?
As one of the most trusted and leading PPE suppliers in the USA, we strictly adhere to Quality Systems Regulations and Good Manufacturing Practices established by the FDA to ensure that the medical devices, including PPE, are safe and effective. For PPE, these standards include fluid resistance, filtering capacity, leak protection, or resistance to tears and snags.

Q.2. How to reduce the shortage of PPE at the workplace?
To reduce the shortage of PPE at your workplace, you can educate and train your staff on the appropriate use of PPE. Also, you may encourage extended and reuse of PPE apparels such as face masks, protective clothing, or gloves. You can also train them to disinfect the PPE for reuse. Lastly, you must monitor PPE inventory in your company to prepare beforehand and find options.

Q.3. What are the causes of the shortage of PPE supply?
The severe and mounting disruption to the global supply of PPE is primarily caused by rising demand, panic buying, hoarding, and misuse that are putting people’s lives at risk from the novel coronavirus and other viral diseases.

Have more questions? We’ll be happy to help you out.

Know the Real Value of Personal Protective Equipment Amid Covid-19 & Stay Protected

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