BD, a supplier of medical technology, announced that the US and Canadian governments had separately made orders for needles and syringes, specifically to deliver any potential vaccine against COVID-19.
The Canadian government has taken an order for 37 million units, which brings the country’s total order to 75 million devices from the company.
While the US ordered 140 million, bringing its total number of devices from BD to 190 million.
Previously, the US has placed a heavy emphasis on ensuring that it has the medical device supply ready for a vaccine, as part of its Operation Warp Speed program.
This saw the US arrange a $138m (€127m) deal with ApiJect Systems America for plastic prefilled syringes in May, and followed this a few weeks later by awarding a $143m contract to SiO2, again for syringe supply.
According to BD, its supply of syringes will be delivered by the end of December 2020, while the company is also in communication with other countries globally for supply during the early part of 2021.
So far, BD was able to confirm that it had received total orders of 330 million needles and syringes, with the UK supplying the request for the remaining 65 million devices.
In order to cope with the surging demand for such devices, BD announced a $70m expansion of its needle and syringe site in Nebraska, US, to add additional manufacturing lines for injection devices, earlier this month.
The expansion will be completed within 12 months and will be supported by the US government with approximately $42m, in return for priority access to the devices produced at the facility, to counter COVID-19 and in the event of future pandemics.