Some of it has flown all the way from China. Some of it has travelled just a few miles down the M6.
In the ceaseless quest for new sources of personal protective equipment (PPE), the Mail Force charity is constantly seeking fresh supplies from pretty much everywhere.
We have scoured the Far East, our own back yard and pretty much everywhere in between.
We now have one source of crucial kit being made in Turkey, for example, and another in Blackburn.
Following rigorous checks by the UK health inspectorates, Mail Force will be donating a million Type IIR surgical masks to the health and care sectors this week – and every week for as long as funds allow
This is a campaign which began with a major airlift from China four weeks ago – and continued with another one yesterday.
And what a sight it was! Not just one great pile of surgical masks but a whole mountain range of them. A million of them all told.
Today, they should all have cleared customs and be on their way to the Covid-19 frontline – all thanks to the generosity of the public.
Following rigorous checks by the UK health inspectorates, Mail Force will be donating a million of these Type IIR surgical masks to the health and care sectors this week – and every week for as long as funds allow.
They follow last week’s arrival of a £500,000 convoy of urgently-needed Type 6B gowns from Turkey.
A week before that, we teamed up with a former textile mill in Lancashire which is currently producing half a million Mail Force hospital aprons each week.
They are all yet more key items on the NHS wish-list of equipment for fighting the virus that has brought the country to its knees.
Having identified a proven manufacturer of Turkish gowns, the charity had to join the queue behind a German health authority which had placed a bulk order the day before
Last week also saw donations to Mail Force break through the £8million barrier – and they just keep on coming.
That is an astonishing sum in the space of a month. It is testimony to the generosity of spirit of the British public – from companies including Marshall Wace and Sky and leading philanthropists such as Hans and Julia Rausing and Sir Brian Souter to public figures like the Duchess of Cornwall and the actress, Emma Thompson.
Most touching of all has been the response of our famously warm-hearted readers.
You have inundated the charity. As of last night, the number of individual donations had sailed past 55,000.
One or two carping critics have accused us of blowing our own trumpet but this paper will not stop saluting all those who have given to the charity while encouraging others to follow suit.
Mail Force is also immensely grateful to international donors including Marc Benioff, founder of the US software giant, Salesforce, and Michael Bloomberg, former mayor of New York.
This is a global crisis and the whole world is seeking a limited amount of PPE with plenty of pitfalls along the way.
When the RAF was despatched to collect one order of Turkish gowns last month, the plane was delayed for days.
Mail Force’s first million mask airlift touched down at Stansted yesterday morning in a chartered Chinese cargo flight from the southern Chinese city of Guangzhou. Pictured, Robert Hardman in front of a mountain of face masks
Then part of the cargo was later rejected by UK inspectors. These things can happen in a furious, fast-moving international marketplace.
So Mail Force has been treading carefully.
Having identified a proven manufacturer of Turkish gowns, the charity had to join the queue behind a German health authority which had placed a bulk order the day before.
HERE’S HOW TO DONATE
Mail Force Charity has been launched with one aim to help support NHS staff, volunteers and care workers fight back against Covid-1 in the UK.
Mail Force is a separate charity established and supported by the Daily Mail and General Trust.
The money raised will fund essential equipment required by the NHS and care workers.
This equipment is vital in protecting the heroic staff whilst they perform their fantastic work in helping the UK overcome this pandemic.
If we raise more money than is needed for vital Covid-1 equipment, we will apply all funds to support the work of the NHS in other ways.
Click the button below to make a donation:
If the button is not visible, click here
Rather than risk delays on the runway, the trustees decided to save money and send the whole lot – all 100,000 of them – overland in lorries.
In the meantime, samples and paperwork could be inspected by the Department of Health and Health and Safety Executive in advance.
Mail Force cannot possibly hope to solve the current shortage of PPE on its own, nor should it.
Its aim is to find new ways of adding capacity to the national supply of PPE.
It is working alongside fully-stretched DoH teams while the NHS and the adult care sector devour unprecedented quantities of this stuff the moment it arrives. Luckily, Mail Force is not alone.
There are other fine charities engaged in the hunt.
The demand and the market is such that we can all add to the UK armoury without competing against our own side.
Meanwhile, the number of UK firms entering production on a viable scale is gradually going up.
However, we are now entering a new and crucial phase.
At the very moment that infections are coming down, and the public are daring to wonder if normality might be around the corner, this is precisely the moment when those at the front cannot lower their guard.
Having talked to many carers in recent days, I detect no sense of relief.
Rather, I have encountered a mounting fear that, having got this invisible monster under control, they may soon find themselves running out of the basic kit required to keep it at bay.
There are no easy solutions to any of this. We can all but try to do our bit. That is why Mail Force, like its beneficiaries, still needs all the help it can get.
Source: Daily Mail – Articles