February 28, 2020 / 8:00 PM / a month ago

U.S. confirms plans to use law to boost production of coronavirus protective gear: Azar

U.S. Human Services (HHS) Secretary Alex Azar speaks to reporters about Trump administration efforts to combat the coronavirus outbreak outside the White House in Washington, U.S., February 28, 2020. REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The United States plans to invoke a law to boost production of key items like masks, gloves and gowns to combat the coronavirus, Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar said on Friday, as negotiations to approve funding for the response moves forward.

Two U.S. officials told Reuters on Thursday that U.S. President Donald Trump’s administration was considering invoking a law called the Defense Production Act to rapidly boost production of key materials for national security or other reasons.

Reporting by Steve Holland; Writing by Makini Brice; Editing by Chizu Nomiyama

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