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It could take 18 months to get coronavirus respirators — because Trump won’t buy any from China

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Production of 500 million N95 air-filtering respirator masks that President Donald Trump ordered could take up to 18 months to get into the hands of the hospitals and healthcare professionals who desperately need them, because Trump doesn’t want to buy the masks from China.

Bloomberg Law reported Thursday that the grant application revealed the information that hasn’t been distributed to the public.

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Currently, hospitals and healthcare workers are being told to reuse masks or make their own out of scarves and bandanas. At the same time, hospitals are also beginning to run out of hand sanitizer in some locations, with medical suppliers unable to refill.

“The government is expecting the masks to be delivered incrementally, according to the application, but will allow those deliveries to occur over 18 months,” said Bloomberg Law. “Manufacturers in China aren’t able to fulfill the request.”

Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar told companies to produce and distribute the masks using an executive order to invoke the Defense Production Act, but Trump claimed it would only be used as a “worst-case scenario.”

Sewing experts are posting patterns to help people be able to sew some masks for those in need.

Read the full report.

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This Europe country is housing quarantined coronavirus patients in a five-star hotel

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An ambulance driver wearing a white protective gown enters a Barcelona hotel and announces the arrival of three new "customers" -- a trio of coronavirus patients discharged from hospital into luxury quarantine.

"Good morning! How are you? My name is Enrique Aranda and I am probably the first non health care worker you see in several days," says the director of the five-star Melia Sarria hotel, peering into the ambulance.

It took just three days to convert the hotel, which features contemporary decor and bathrooms with marble finishing, into a clinic.

"Some patients arrive thinking that they were taken out of hospital to be left to die, many people are frightened. I try to make them forget all that," said Aranda, wearing mask and gloves.

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UK Labour to unveil new leader to replace Jeremy Corbyn

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Britain's main opposition Labour party on Saturday unveils a new leader who will take the helm of a defeated and divided party in the midst of the coronavirus crisis.

Keir Starmer, a former director of state prosecutions and Labour's Brexit spokesman, is the runaway favourite to win the ballot of around 500,000 party members and succeed Jeremy Corbyn.

The announcement will be a low-key affair, with a planned special conference cancelled due to restrictions on social gatherings imposed to stem the spread of COVID-19.

Instead, the result will be put out in a press release mid-morning -- and candidates have been asked to pre-record their victory speeches.

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‘Trump fires people for telling the truth’: President blasted for ‘dead of night decision’ to fire intel watchdog

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President Donald Trump was harshly criticized on Friday for firing intelligence community Inspector General Michael Atkinson.

House Intel Chair Adam Schiff (D-CA) and Senate Intel Ranking Member Mark Warner (D-VA) were among the lawmakers who took to Twitter to criticize Trump on his favorite social media platform.

Here's some of what people were saying about Trump's decision:

Trump’s dead of night decision to fire ICIG Michael Atkinson is another blatant attempt to gut the independence of the Intelligence Community and retaliate against those who dare to expose presidential wrongdoing.

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