Germany to send 60 ventilators to the UK to help NHS tackle coronavirus

PUBLISHED: 15:26 09 April 2020 | UPDATED: 14:02 23 April 2020

Prime ministerBoris Johnson meets German chancellor Angela Merkel last year. Picture: Stefan Rousseau/PA Wire/PA Images

Prime ministerBoris Johnson meets German chancellor Angela Merkel last year. Picture: Stefan Rousseau/PA Wire/PA Images

PA Wire/PA Images

Germany is set to send 60 mobile ventilators to its European partner to help the NHS tackle the coronavirus outbreak.

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After an appeal from the UK to NATO allies, German newspaper Der Spiegel reports that Angela Merkel’s defence minister Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer has agreed that army will send 60 ventilators.

The Bundeswehr will donate the machines at no cost to its European partner, hoping that it will be able to help the country at its time of need.

More than 480 ventilators have arrived from overseas in the last month, either bought or donated from countries including China, America, Sweden and Taiwan.

At the weekend health secretary Matt Hancock said that the UK needs 18,000 ventilators, a lower target than the initial 30,000 the NHS requested.

The health service has around 9,000 to 10,000 at present, and expects an extra 1,500 to be ready for Easter weekend, leaving a shortfall.

The UK originally rejected an EU scheme to work together to order the life-saving equipment, before claiming that they had missed the e-mail communications to join for the reason it had not joined.

Last week Michael Gove insisted that as an “independent nation” it was able to create the ventilators it needs without the support of other countries.

He told the BBC: “I’ve talked to senior figures in the NHS and they’ve reassured me that there is nothing that we can’t do as an independent nation that being part of that scheme would have allowed us to do”.


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