Medical technology companies have been granted approval to coordinate the supply and potential manufacture of essential medical equipment in Australia.
The ACCC has granted interim authorisation to the Medical Technology Association of Australia (the MTAA) to allow its members and other groups, such as suppliers or distributors of medical equipment, to share information between each other.
This is due to the demand for ventilators, testing kits, personal protective equipment and other medical equipment needed to deal with the COVID-19 pandemic.
Under the agreement, medical technology companies can coordinate orders and supply requests, prioritise requests, and jointly tender to supply COVID-19 medical equipment so that potential supply shortages can be addressed more quickly.
It will also allow them to keep Federal Government, State and Territory Governments and relevant health agencies up to date on supply issues.
Rod Sims, ACCC Chair said the commission’s decision will help companies urgently address potential shortages or other constraints on the supply of crucial medical equipment.
“Medical technology companies will now be able to roll out a coordinated plan for supplies of medical equipment nation-wide, which is likely to be crucial in assisting Australia’s response to COVID-19,” he said.
The ACCC granted interim authorisation on Wednesday morning after receiving the application on Tuesday, and will now seek feedback on interim authorisation, as well as the application for final authorisation for a period of 12 months.