With the spread of COVID-19, many shippers have turned to import Personal Protective Equipment (PPE). PPE is crucial for medical personnel and essential workers, especially during this pandemic. There is a high demand for PPE across the board, especially face masks. These items are highly regulated. So it is important to make sure that you meet all the guidelines to avoid delays or cancellations of your shipments.
PPLUS Global Logistics has been busy transporting PPE throughout COVID-19. They also helped with their knowledge of the shipping industry so they could make a difference.
In the U.S. surgical, sterile, and medical masks are considered medical devices. It requires both the importer and the exporter of these products to be registered with the FDA. Depending upon the PPE commodity that is being imported, there can be multiple U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) requirements to navigate.
While non-medical masks and face coverings do not require FDA registration, they often require FDA declarations and disclosures at the time of import. Some supporting documents that may be required are:
Global communities are becoming dependent on Chinese factories to produce masks and other PPE for medical and personal use. Companies have rushed to import, and at the beginning of the pandemic, they overlooked regulations. However, governments are catching up with the regulation of PPE imports and meeting the requirements. Compliance with international logistics is necessary to avoid delays, refusal, and confiscation in extreme cases.
China has recently implemented policies that relate to PPE exporting for tighter control, including a dedicated HS-code for PPE products to simplify export declarations.
Examples of commonly shipped PPE are eye protection, isolation gowns, face masks, face shields, N95 respirators, powered air-purifying respirators, elastomeric respirators, and ventilators.
The need to move PPE cargo as quickly and cost-efficiently as possible is important. PPLUS can help determine if air or ocean freight is the best solution. Along with utilizing expedited less than container load (LCL) of full container load (FCL) shipping could be the differentiator your business needs.
For domestic freight working with a third-party logistics provider will give you the benefits of finding the best shipping strategy. Whether that is full truckload (FTL) or less-than-truckload (LTL).
The PPLUS Global team has been working around the clock to ensure that PPE gets to those who need it the most as quickly and safely as possible. They ship both domestically and internationally and can work with you to navigate the FDA and CBP red tape.
Domestically, the PPLUS operations team is providing 24-hour expedited air and ground transportation of the raw materials and finished products for hand sanitizers and other critical supplies. They have also aided in moving medical supplies from direct manufacturers all over the world to key government and medical facilities in the U.S. and specifically into Washington, D.C.
PPLUS is continuing to support its customers and the Performance Industry. They also want to help the nation, by delivering life-saving goods and basic necessities our customers need for their businesses and families.