US Congressman Introduces Bill to Fight COVID-19 with Strategic National Stockpile
A bill to fight coronavirus has been introduced by the United States Congressman Stephen Lynch of Massachusetts. It is towards the establishment of a blockchain network that is able to oversee the distribution of personal protection equipment (PPE), ventilators as well as other essential medical equipment during the ongoing pandemic.
The National Emergency Biodefense Network was established for the regulation of the supply of drugs, vaccines, medical devices, as well as other supplies. The bill called the “Strategic National Stockpile [SNS] Enhancement and Transparency Act” or H.R. 6607 will help with the development and implementation of the network using a private blockchain.
The congressman proposed a $25 million budget via fiscal 2022 for the execution of what is in the bill, including the use of blockchain technology in monitoring available supplies in the SNS and for each state in the U.S.
According to Mr. Stephen Lynch on April 29, he introduced a blockchain-based approach in fighting the pandemic because of the challenges of insufficient equipment and supplies facing numerous healthcare providers in the country. However, requests for help from the SNS have gone unanswered.
He continued that they rely on the SNS to supplement state reserves of biodefense supplies and equipment. Hence, the bill will ensure that the SNS is ready to attend to future crises. The adoption of a private blockchain system can help in verifying the status of biodefense capacity in real-time towards better preparation.
The pandemic has become a political tool by the Trump administration. However, Lynch introduced the bill a few weeks after it. In the words of Jared Kushner on April 2, the federal government has the exclusive control of the stockpile and its potential life-saving equipment and not the states.
Blockchain technology has been considered during this time of COVID-19. Several others in the U.S. are considering it for solutions to the pandemic. Congress has been looking into the implementation of blockchain-based voting if lockdown or social distancing orders continue until the 2020 elections.