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National Estimates of Increase in US Mechanical Ventilator Supply During the COVID-19 Pandemic

Educational Objective
To identify the key insights or developments described in this article
1 Credit CME

Despite the unprecedented demand for mechanical ventilators in the US during the COVID-19 pandemic, the last survey of US hospitals occurred in 2010 and estimated approximately 62 000 full-featured ventilators.1 To meet the demand for mechanical ventilation, the federal government invoked the Defense Production Act to partner with manufacturers to purchase as many as 200 000 ventilators of varying functionality across production phases for the US Strategic National Stockpile.2 Many hospitals also purchased additional full-featured ventilators during the pandemic. Therefore, we performed an updated assessment of current ventilators in use at US hospitals to aid with current and future pandemic preparedness and to determine whether any change was correlated with COVID-19 burden.

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CME Disclosure Statement: Unless noted, all individuals in control of content reported no relevant financial relationships. If applicable, all relevant financial relationships have been mitigated.

Article Information

Accepted for Publication: June 5, 2022.

Published: August 2, 2022. doi:10.1001/jamanetworkopen.2022.24853

Open Access: This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the CC-BY License. © 2022 Tsai TC et al. JAMA Network Open.

Corresponding Author: Thomas C. Tsai, MD, MPH, Department of Surgery, Brigham and Women’s Hospital, 75 Francis St, Boston, MA 02115 (ttsai@bwh.harvard.edu).

Author Contributions: Dr Tsai had full access to all the data in the study and takes responsibility for the integrity of the data and the accuracy of the data analysis.

Concept and design: Tsai, Jha, Figueroa.

Acquisition, analysis, or interpretation of data: Tsai, Orav, Figueroa.

Drafting of the manuscript: Tsai.

Critical revision of the manuscript for important intellectual content: All authors.

Statistical analysis: Tsai, Orav.

Obtained funding: Tsai.

Administrative, technical, or material support: Figueroa.

Supervision: Jha, Figueroa.

Conflict of Interest Disclosures: Dr Tsai reported receiving grants from the Massachusetts Life Sciences Center and Massachusetts Consortium on Pathogen Readiness during the conduct of the study and grants from the Commonwealth Fund and Arnold Ventures outside the submitted work. Dr Figueroa reported receiving grants from the Massachusetts Consortium on Pathogen Readiness during the conduct of the study and grants from the Commonwealth Fund, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, the National Institute of Aging, the Episcopal Health Foundation, and Arnold Ventures outside the submitted work. No other disclosures were reported.

Funding/Support: This study was supported by a grant from the Massachusetts Consortium on Pathogen Readiness underwritten by the Massachusetts Life Sciences Center.

Role of the Funder/Sponsor: The sponsor had no role in the design and conduct of the study; collection, management, analysis, and interpretation of the data; preparation, review, or approval of the manuscript; and decision to submit the manuscript for publication.

Disclaimer: This manuscript was written and submitted for publication prior to the authors' government service. Any views or opinions expressed are those of those authors and are not made on behalf of the federal government.

References
1.
Rubinson  L , Vaughn  F , Nelson  S ,  et al.  Mechanical ventilators in US acute care hospitals.   Disaster Med Public Health Prep. 2010;4(3):199-206. doi:10.1001/dmp.2010.18 PubMedGoogle ScholarCrossref
2.
Branson  R , Dichter  JR , Feldman  H ,  et al.  The US Strategic National Stockpile ventilators in coronavirus disease 2019: a comparison of functionality and analysis regarding the emergency purchase of 200 000 devices.   Chest. 2021;159(2):634-652. doi:10.1016/j.chest.2020.09.085 PubMedGoogle ScholarCrossref
3.
HealthData.gov. COVID-19 reported patient impact and hospital capacity by state. Updated June 27, 2022. Accessed January 19, 2022. https://healthdata.gov/Hospital/COVID-19-Reported-Patient-Impact-and-Hospital-Capa/g62h-syeh
4.
US Census Bureau. Historical population density data (1910-2020). Updated October 8, 2021. Accessed December 23, 2021. https://www.census.gov/data/tables/time-series/dec/density-data-text.html
5.
Keohane  LM .  Expanding ventilator capacity—the need for state and regional planning.   JAMA Health Forum. 2020;1(4):e200391. doi:10.1001/jamahealthforum.2020.0391Google ScholarCrossref
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