Washington will return more than 400 ventilators received from the Strategic National Stockpile so they can be used by states that have been harder hit by COVID-19.
Governor Jay Inslee made the announcement on Sunday.
“These ventilators are going to New York and others states hardest hit by this virus,” Inslee said. “I’ve said many times over the last few weeks, we are in this together. This should guide all of our actions at an individual and state level in the coming days and weeks.”
Washington recently purchased 750 ventilators, which are expected to arrive over the next few weeks when cases are expected to peak.
As of 1 p.m. Sunday, the state Department of Health listed 7,591 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the state and 310 deaths linked to the novel coronavirus. Nearly 88,000 tests have been conducted with 8.6 percent testing positive.
A majority of the cases are in King, Snohomish and Pierce counties. Clark County has 137 confirmed cases and six deaths.
Dr. Raquel Bono, director of the state’s COVID-19 response, said mitigation efforts such as social distancing are why Washington is able to direct help to other states.
“Thanks to the mitigation efforts the governor has put in place and the cooperation of Washingtonians, we have seen fewer infections in our communities than anticipated,” Bono said. “Our current status allows us to help others who have a more immediate need.”
Inslee announced a mandatory stay at home order on March 23, which impacted all non-essential businesses and travel. On Friday, Inslee extended that order to May 4.