Russian manufacturer says it refuses to believe news reports that America trashed the ventilators shipped to NYC in April
The Rostec subsidiary that manufactured the 45 ventilators delivered to New York earlier this year as part of a U.S.-Russian exchange of medical supplies says it doesn’t believe reports in the American news media that the U.S. Federal Emergency Management Agency “disposed of” the hardware. “We believe in reason and reject the idea that American officials could do such a thing with valuable equipment so highly in demand around the world during the pandemic,” a spokesperson for the Concern Radio-Electronic Technologies (KRET) told the news agency TASS.
On October 19, 2020, citing an unnamed FEMA representative, BuzzFeed News reported that the Russian ventilators “have essentially been tossed in the trash” by the U.S. government. American hospitals were initially unable to use the lifesaving machines due to a lack of adapters to convert their required electrical voltage. Subsequently, a few weeks after the Aventa-M ventilators were delivered, several of the same models burst into flames in Russian hospitals, killing six people and raising concerns about the devices’ safety.
The ventilators also became politically toxic in the United States after American officials completed the equipment exchange with Russia by shipping medical supplies worth almost 10 times as much. Additionally, the Russian machinery’s manufacturer, KRET, is currently under U.S. sanctions imposed against Moscow for Russia’s incursions into Ukraine (though White House officials say the sanctions don’t apply to medical supplies).
“There are reports in certain media outlets, but they can hardly be considered a source of official or reliable information,” KRET’s spokesperson told TASS.