The Spirited Network is on an important mission to source and fundraise for masks, life-saving medical devices, and other critical personal protective equipment (PPE) and get them to medical professionals and those who need it most, as quickly as possible. We are everything from an international clearinghouse that connects healthcare providers who need supply with those who have it, a risk capital facility working with donors to finance purchases of critical equipment under tight timelines, and then distributing them at cost, and a logistics support network. We are here to shake up the supply chain, improve logistics and ultimately save lives across the world as we tackle one of the most monumental life or death problems resulting from the pandemic – the huge shortages of critical PPE and medical supplies and the breakdown in supply chains and effective coordination in the face of surging demand globally. Frontline healthcare professionals are taking care of us and in turn, we need to help take care of them.
Now, more than ever, emergency services require a range of protective supplies and medical equipment from masks, gowns, and gloves to ventilators and more in order to make sure they can continue to do their jobs to protect us. Otherwise, they are practically defenseless and are at the significant risk of contracting the virus, and spreading it to the people they interact with. The protective equipment is what stands between them, unwell patients, and catching one of the most contagious, deadliest viruses we’ve seen in generations when they are key in combating this pandemic on the frontline. Their lives (and our lives) depend on it. Whilst most of us are being asked to help tackle this crisis by stepping back and staying home, key workers who are the first responders are being tasked with stepping forward to address this epic challenge. They are crucial in the fight against the virus and ensuring a full recovery. However, they do risk their own health and endure exhaustion, mental trauma, and many other challenges on our behalf. We have seen too many stories globally of key workers being sent to the frontline without the right protection and resources as there is not enough to go around with surging global demand and traditional supply chains unable to keep up, despite the efforts of many institutions and organisations around the world. There is the added problem of bidding wars and price gouging with private sector profiteers exploiting the situation for profit and acquiring supplies to sell on at huge markups. Furthermore, often the supplies have diverted away from the places which need it most urgently due to a lack of effective coordination and communication. Put simply, many lives depend on the ability for frontline staff to have adequate, safe, and reliable protection and resources and we are determined to help address the problem to give them all a fighting chance.
This situation calls for a more innovative and nimble response to support traditional avenues and as a result, it is up to organisations, companies, and individuals to work together like never before to support governments and get the frontline workers the protective suppliers they need. We seek to bring more transparency and coordination by facilitating connections and working with governments, corporations, trusted manufacturers, nonprofit organisations, individuals and more, so that supply chain diversity, efficiency, and resiliency is increased. Governments across the world at all levels from local and state and national as well as healthcare and frontline organisations report their critical needs and trusted suppliers provide us with information about available products. We help with conducting due diligence and help accelerate the procurement process. By centralizing the marketplace, we increase the level of visibility into the sale process, and reduce huge private sector mark-ups, encourage price competition, and combat exploitation.
Together with our partner organisations we are working together to connect need to supply to ensure that masks and other PPE alongside life-saving medical devices such as ventilators get to where they are needed most, looking at current needs today and how these needs will change or develop moving forward (not just around volumes but also types of supplies). Through a combination of our own and our partner organisations’ worldwide networks of facilitators and suppliers, we have clear access to hundreds of millions of supplies ranging from N95 masks, gloves, and protective suits to point of care diagnostics tests and ventilators from across Asia, the Americas and Europe. Partners we work with include 501(c) Helena, where our founder Abbas Kazmi is a member. We raise and provide risk capital to help finance purchases of critical PPE and equipment that we then distribute to hospital systems, clinics and others in the medical sector and frontline organisations, etc. that are most in need, as well as act as a clearinghouse by matching those who need supply with those who have it, triaging urgent needs and helping with logistics to ensure that it gets to where it is needed most as quickly as possible so that every shipment is a life saving one.
As COVID-19 causes respiratory illness, masks and other key PPE keep professionals safe from transmission risk. As the coronavirus attacks the body, the lungs fill with fluid and so a ventilator is important to help patients breathe until they recover, otherwise, there is the serious risk of death when people cannot get sufficient oxygen into their bloodstream and other organs start to fail. Ventilators can make the difference between life or death. It is clear that Covid-19 is not some great leveller or an equal opportunity illness and we recognise the intersectionalities of health outcomes. With this in mind, we also conduct targeted outreach to healthcare providers and organisations that traditionally serve underrepresented or historically disadvantaged communities to ensure more equitable distribution of key supplies for high-risk groups. We are working on every part of the protective and essential medical equipment challenge from supply and demand, to data, fulfilment and logistics and financing and risk capital, with a view to ensuring supplies are delivered where they are needed most. We are 100% not for profit, charge no fees and are purely run by volunteers.
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Have Protective & Critical Equipment?
We seek reliable suppliers who can help meet the demand and any specifications/requirements around types, quality, delivery times etc. of healthcare providers we assist. Where possible, we help with necessary upfront work to accelerate procurement and sourcing decisions. Our vetting process includes examining certifications, supporting documentation, photos/videos of products and/or production, leads times and references. There are also new sources of supply, with companies in other industries shifting focus to help address the crisis and suppliers becoming increasingly creative in leveraging innovative technology to produce new equipment (including using 3D printing) and improve logistics around key issues such as sourcing domestic and overseas parts. Others are also researching possible sterilisation methods to safely redeploy PPE to those who need it. Finally, many people and organisations/companies do not realise that they have relevant PPE and medical equipment readily available. Whether it is a mask that was stored for protection against extreme weather or for construction use in your cupboard at home, garage, basement or place of work, or sets of protective equipment that you were simply stockpiling, unsure of what the future would hold, more of us than we may realise may sit on equipment that is crucial for our front-line workers right now. Your equipment could save someone’s life. Alternatively, you might be well connected or a supplier of this crucial equipment yourself or be able to produce some through your business and are keen to channel supply to the right places but are unsure of where to start. Please fill in our form BELOW, with details of the supply that you have, and we will connect you with those needing it. Please note that you do not need to offer equipment in bulk – even individual or small quantities of masks and other equipment can be truly transformative.
Need Protective & Critical Equipment?
If you are a healthcare provider or work in healthcare and need masks, other PPE, and key medical equipment such as ventilators, please fill in this form HERE so we can connect you to reliable suppliers. We can act quickly and assist with meeting particular requirements and deadlines, and help with due diligence. We understand how challenging it can currently be to source such crucial equipment, and want to show our appreciation for all the hard work frontline workers are doing to keep us safe. Simply fill in your request, and we will do our utmost to connect you with a supply that we can access through our networks and those of our partners as far as possible. Through a combination of our own and our partner organisations’ worldwide networks of facilitators and suppliers, we have clear access to hundreds of millions of supplies ranging from N95 masks, gloves, and protective suits to point of care diagnostics tests and ventilators from across Asia, the Americas and Europe. Our team of volunteers helps coordinate with suppliers to ensure the equipment is located and gets to where it is needed most, as quickly as possible.
Working with 501(c) Helena, we are also seeking your help in order to:
– Raise further funding in order to support the procurement teams, as a working capital facility in order to be able to source protective equipment and key medical devices, purchase them at pace, and give them to health services at cost price. Beyond the initial raise, our supply network is such that we have a significant ability to deploy further capital. We are continually raising as much as possible until no longer required. We are in a race against private sector profiteers, but would not bid against other medical institutions or governments. Any contribution would make a difference so please do get in touch at firstname.lastname@example.org if you are able to help.
– Your funding will thereby act as a working capital facility, and fund private sector mark-ups on key equipment, where such equipment cannot be sourced elsewhere – any remaining funds will be returned to donors pari-passu.
– We are working closely with experienced medical professionals and procurement times in healthcare systems such as the NHS to identify where the need is greatest.
We actively look to work with governments across the world at all levels from local and state and national, corporations, manufacturers, non profit organisations, philanthropists, individuals and more, in order to help us on our mission to accelerate delivery of PPE and critical supplies to those who need it most on the frontline. By partnering with organisations that share our goals and can support their execution, our collective abilities are enhanced. If you are part of a relevant organisation we would like to hear from you. If you would like to partner with us please email us at email@example.com.