- COVID is seriously impacting the city of Shanghai with a current complete city lock down.
- Suzhou (just west of Shanghai) is also heavily impacted.
- Changzhou (where Exact Medical is located) had a mild virus situation which is currently controlled.
- Exact Medical is currently in full production operations.
- Shanghai Port remains open and shipping is normal at this time.
As is currently prominent in the news around the world, the City of Shanghai is in a serious virus situation. Today the city reported 20,000 new virus cases since yesterday. A week ago, the daily report was around 6,000 cases. Shanghai as of today is in full lock down. All neighborhoods are closed and all residents are required to quarantine in their homes. The only businesses open are food supply and medical care. Everything including all factories are closed. From each family, 1 family member is allowed to depart the home 1 time every 3 days for a maximum of 2 hours for the purpose of buying food and other essentials. Mass virus testing is conducted on the entire city population of 28 million. The government has announced that they expect the Shanghai situation to stabilize no later than April 11th and while everyone is hopeful the 11th is only 4 days away and no one will be surprised if the situation remains dire.
Close to Shanghai is the city of Suzhou and while their virus situation is problematic it is by no means as serious as Shanghai. Currently, however, Suzhou is also in complete lock down.
The city of Changzhou (where Exact Medical is located) is open and virus free. Several weeks ago, there were virus cases which resulted in a total of 5 days partial city lock down and then a week or so of additional partial lock downs. The government here has changed their approach to the virus and if at all possible, they are doing lock downs of only those neighborhoods that have virus cases. In addition, the government is taking steps to keep factories and the economy running as much as possible. Over the entire situation here in Changzhou, we had a total of 200 virus cases and there has not been a single virus case in over a week. As a result, the city is now completely open with all businesses in operation including restaurants, shopping malls and the like.
In total Exact Medical lost 2 days of production due to the shutdown. Currently we are in full production with 100% of our employees reporting for work each day and we are also on an overtime schedule until we can recover the lost production of the 2-day shutdown. Exact Medical routinely keeps a minimum of 2 months supply of raw materials so at this time raw material shortages are not a concern. Exact does have several raw material suppliers located in the lock down area in Shanghai. Exact is currently in negotiations with the government to arrange for employees of those suppliers to be moved and live in the factories and resume production for our raw material needs. So far, the government has looked favorably at our supplier plan. While we hope Shanghai reopens soon, this Plan B should serve us well if the worst happens. In all things, Exact Medical “Hopes for the best but prepares for the worst.”
Currently shipping containers and Shanghai Port are not affected by the situation. The Port of Shanghai is actually located approximately 60 KM from the city as it is on an Island in the middle of the Bay. A causeway is the only access to the port and there are no cities, villages or local inhabitants on the Island. The government is monitoring and virus testing vigorously all truck drivers and employees that access the port. Ocean ship crews that arrive in port are immediately taken to quarantine hotels located right on the pier next to the ship.
To give you an idea of how serious the government takes protecting and keeping the port open, the procedure for container handling is draconic. When an empty container arrives at our factory the doors to the cab of the truck are sealed shut. If the seal is broken or tampered with the truck is not allowed to reenter the Shanghai port area. The driver is not allowed to depart the cab of the truck for any reason from the time they depart the port area until the time they return to the port. Please don’t ask the obvious question. I have not asked and I don’t want to know. The exterior and interior surfaces of the entire truck and container must be sprayed with an alcohol solution before the loading of product. Such serious measures give assurance that the government is committed to keeping the port in operation.
So, in summary – so far so good. Exact Medical is maintaining normal production and shipping and is committed to do so regardless of future developments.
From Changzhou China
Exact Medical Manufacturing, Inc.