In an effort to support health authorities and front line workers by providing increased access to medical supplies, the BC Government has partnered with the Digital Technology Supercluster and the Business Council of British Columbia to create the COVID-19 Supply Hub.
The goal of the hub is to coordinate, source and expedite medical supplies and personal protective equipment (PPE) for provincial health authorities.
According to the provincial government, the COVID-19 Supply Hub will provide a single place in an attempt to “triage and prioritize” offers and donations of essential supplies.
“In this provincial state of emergency, partnership and coordination are critical to keep our front-line workers safe and support our COVID-19 response and recovery,” said Mike Farnworth, Minister of Public Safety and Solicitor General. “Launching the COVID-19 Supply Hub is an important step in maintaining our supply chain and making sure essential goods and services are getting where they need to go, and fast.”
The Supply Hub is a provincial initiative and, according to Premier John Horgan is thought to showcase “how important it is to work together to support our front-line workers.”
Horgan added in the press release, “by giving B.C. businesses a platform to help, we are enabling some of our best and brightest minds to meet the demands of this pandemic and help keep people safe.”
The “made-in-BC” COVID-19 Supply Hub was developed by local tech company Traction on Demand to operate on the Salesforce platform. The hub will make the needs and specifications of critical supplies publicly available. The government adds that from there, proposals can be quickly and efficiently managed and evaluated, so the right products get to the right workers on the front lines as efficiently as possible.
The Supply Hub will be mainly focused on sourcing medical supplies for the healthcare system, however, it will also be accepting other essentials like cleaning supplies.
“This initiative demonstrates how tech can be used quickly to make a difference in people’s lives,” said Michelle Mungall, Minister of Jobs, Economic Development and Competitiveness. “I am incredibly proud of the leading-edge work being done by the Digital Technology Supercluster, the business community and companies like Traction on Demand. They are finding unique ways to help front-line workers meet the needs of those impacted the most by COVID-19.”
According to the press release, the idea for the new medical supply hub came to fruition within the span of just seven days.
Sue Paish, CEO, Digital Technology Supercluster, said, “From concept to actualization within one week, the supply hub is illustrative of the Supercluster’s ability to harness our community’s power of collaboration. We are moving at an unprecedented pace to meet the demands of this pandemic, with innovative solutions. The supply hub will make a difference and address critical needs.”
The COVID-19 Supply Hub will be managed under the new Provincial Supply Coordination Unit at Emergency Management BC in partnership with the Provincial Health Services Authority.
Companies looking to offer support or supplies through the COVID-19 Supplier Hub can access it here: www.gov.bc.ca/supplyhub