Covid-19 (Recovery Strategy) (Resilience)

Part of the debate – in the Scottish Parliament at on 27 April 2022.

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Photo of Finlay Carson Finlay Carson Conservative

As the pandemic begins, thankfully, to ease, I know that the Scottish Government has been in consultation with various personal protective equipment suppliers about the need to stockpile for future pandemics. However, concerns have been voiced about the huge costs in the procurement of PPE, and that suppliers and users could potentially be left with out-of-date and useless equipment, which is what happened the last time.

Can greater consideration be given to encouraging domestic manufacturers such as Alpha Solway, which is based in Dumfries and makes 150,000 respirators a week? Its production could increase to more than 2 million respirators a week, which would be enough to meet the entire needs of the NHS, because of its investment in using its own raw materials. Would the cabinet secretary look into that as a more cost-effective way forward for the long term?