CHINA Bush-China group joins efforts to combat COVID-19


Bush-China group joins efforts to combat COVID-19

By Zhang Mengxu | People's Daily app

06:43, May 08, 2020

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Neil Bush, chairman of the H.W. Bush Foundation for US-China Relations (left). (Photo: People's Daily)

Washington (People’s Daily) - Neil Bush, chairman of the George H.W. Bush Foundation for US-China Relations, recently handed out almost 100,000 face masks to Houston residents and made possible by three Chinese companies. The foundation will continue to raise funds throughout May and plans to purchase 200,000 masks from China.

While speaking on the generosity of their Chinese friends, Bush said, “China continues to be our reliable trading partner for our country during this time of need.”

Since the COVID-19 outbreak in January, the foundation has joined with several US and Chinese partners to launch the US-China Coronavirus Action Network (CAN), mobilizing the civil forces of both countries to fight the pandemic together.

Robbin Goodman, director of the foundation’s business programs and corporate affairs, told People’s Daily that when the network was established, it was dedicated to mobilizing resources to help China cope with the pandemic. As the US situation intensified, they focused on buying more personal protective equipment for the US.

The Chinese side is responsible for finding suppliers in China and coordinating deliveries. The Bush-China Foundation is responsible for coordinating partners in the US, such as local governments, hospitals, and communities, for delivering protective equipment to those in need.

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Donated medical supplies from China.  (Photo: People's Daily)

Given the fact that US hospitals do not have experience in purchasing medical supplies from China, the foundation and the Supply Chain Management Research Center at the University of Arkansas (UA) have established a group to provide US customers with a quick way to purchase protective materials from China.

The UA team has identified 10 medical material manufacturers certified by the US Food and Drug Administration (USFDA) in China. The process takes only 14 days from order placement to delivery. At present, the 500,000 sets of protective materials (N95 face masks, surgical face masks, protective clothing) that they ordered for three hospitals in Missouri and Texas were successfully delivered.

Additionally, the George Bush US-China Relations Foundation is also committed to organizing online video conferences to allow medical and public health experts from both countries to exchange insight on pandemic relief efforts.

"We humans need to be united to deal with the enemy of the coronavirus. This is not a problem of any country. If we are not united, then nothing will happen," Goodman said.

"The spread of the new coronavirus endangers the health, well-being and economy of all countries. As the two largest economies in the world, the US and China need to join forces to curb the spread of the virus. There is a Chinese saying ‘wind and rain, we all are in the same boat;’ and there is a Western saying, ’united we stand, divided we fall.’ We are very proud to be able to contribute to the private sector of the US and China and to do something to fight the pandemic together," David Firestein, President and CEO of the Bush China Foundation, told People’s Daily.

Firestein said that no matter the differences in system, policy, or perspective between the US and China, virtually no major global challenge, including COVID-19, can be solved without robust cooperation between the two countries.

Firestein emphasized that officials and private citizens of both countries should share, in a spirit of honesty, candor, and transparency, information and ideas on COVID-19. 

“Looking ahead, the Bush China Foundation intends to redouble our efforts to bridge the widening and the increasingly dangerous gulf between the US and China and do our part to get the relationship back on track in ways that are good for the US, good for the bilateral relationship, and good for the world,” Firestein added.

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