To Our Valued Customers,April 28, 2020  
We're committed to protecting your future.
Of the many questions we've received from health care professionals throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, perhaps this one is the most urgent: How will Henry Schein help to protect my health, my team, and my practice?

The answer to that question is every bit as urgent, and Henry Schein is committed to providing it. Let's start with the question of infection control first, and specifically the one product we are asked about more than any other – the N95 respirator.
 
 
Unmasking a market myth
As you know, the supply chain for personal protective equipment (PPE) is under extreme stress, which has caused a scarcity of products globally.

While Henry Schein is one of the world's largest distributors of PPE, we typically do not stock large volumes of N95 respirators because our customers – primarily office-based practitioners – historically haven't used many N95s. This mask is typically used in acute-care settings, not medical or dental offices. Of course, that's changing rapidly as health authorities issue new guidelines for office-based practitioners that include regular use of the N95.

As a result, Henry Schein is working around the clock to source high-quality N95s (or similar FDA-approved products) to meet the new guidelines at a time when supply is tighter than ever and demand is historically high. Complicating the already tight global supply chain are rapidly changing government restrictions in certain countries on both the export of PPE and the in-country distribution of PPE, as well as the need to ensure that PPE procured from new suppliers complies with relevant regulatory requirements. We are hopeful that there will be additional supply of PPE in the market beginning in late May and increasing steadily thereafter, assuming no impact from these restrictions.

This raises another question we hear a lot: Why are some companies saying they have a ready supply of N95s today?

We can't account for what others are saying, but we can assure you that Henry Schein has investigated hundreds of companies claiming to produce and/or have access to N95 and KN95 masks. In fact, of those hundreds of potential sources of N95 and KN95 masks we have examined, just a few meet regulatory requirements and have the quality worthy of our brand and your practice. And of those few we've chosen, delivery to the market may be subject to several factors, including government export controls and, once shipped, to possible in-country government restrictions on local distribution.

Because we put your personal safety first, and because quality and regulatory compliance is especially critical in a health care setting, we simply refuse to sell N95/KN95s that we can't stand behind – or any PPE item for that matter. (If you are receiving offers of N95/KN95 availability, we encourage you to take a close look at the quality and the source of that product and whether it complies with relevant health care regulations.)

Please also know that Henry Schein is supporting the efforts of various professional associations by consistently advocating with government officials on behalf of office-based practitioners to emphasize the key role you are playing as front-line health care professionals and that your requirements for PPE must be met.

As clinical circumstances change, Henry Schein is working to find new ways to protect your health. This includes, for example, containing the dispersion of aerosols, which is an increasingly important topic in dental practices. Henry Schein has a wide selection of dental dams, isolation/suction devices, and air purification systems. We are exploring and evaluating new products as they emerge in this rapidly changing category.

To hear more about what we're doing for the benefit of our dental customers, and our view of the future of the industry, please watch this video from Jon Koch, the CEO of Henry Schein's Global Dental Group and Interim CEO of Henry Schein One.
 
 
Practical Resources
Henry Schein's Coronavirus (COVID-19) Resource Center features information of practical use for health care professionals, including a section devoted to applying for relief under the CARES Act and a preventive maintenance checklist for practices experiencing an extended closure. The site also includes the latest guidance from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on infection prevention and control as well as Henry Schein's Coronavirus (COVID-19) Education Center, featuring webinars focused on helping practitioners manage through the crisis.

Of particular interest in the week ahead is a webinar at 2 pm ET on Friday, May 1, 2020, we present “COVID-19 & Dentistry: Reducing & Managing Your Aerosols,” featuring Michelle Strange, a practicing hygienist, surgical assistant, volunteer, educator, and podcast co-host for “A Tale of Two Hygienists.” To register, please click here.
 
 
FINANCING
As for protecting your financial future, we continue to provide a range of financial services, as detailed below, to ensure that you have the resources necessary to resume caring for patients as social distancing restrictions are lifted.

We continue to assess the financial impact of COVID-19 in each country, and we are providing flexible financial solutions to our customers that vary by country. Our team of experts can help to customize options for your specific needs. Please e-mail us at [email protected] with any questions.
 
 
SUPPLY CHAIN
Please note that the supply chain conditions described below reflect the situation globally for Henry Schein as of today. Our inventory varies country-by-country, and we encourage customers to contact your local Henry Schein representative to discuss the availability of particular products in each market. Also please be aware that the cost of raw materials and shipping is fluctuating, and those changes may flow through into the product categories listed below, among others. Here is the latest status report:
  • Products experiencing high demand and shortages: face masks, gloves, hand sanitizers, isolation gowns, jacket and lab coats, shoe covers, and surface disinfectant wipes.
  • Products experiencing high demand: alcohol prep pads, blood infusion sets, face shields, IV solutions, IV extension sets, nasal cannulas, protective eyewear, pulse oximeters, respiratory equipment, stethoscopes, and thermometers.
In general, the risk remains that we may periodically run out of certain items in the weeks ahead. We are working with urgency to maximize supply.
 
 
As noted at the outset, Henry Schein is committed to protecting your future today and all the days leading up to the full resumption of care, because your future is our future. We look forward to helping you accelerate the recovery of your practice and to fulfill our brand mission of “Rely on Us.” If you have questions, please call or email your local Henry Schein representative or reach out to your local customer service team. We thank you for the privilege of serving you, and we thank you for your efforts to keep society safe.
 
 
Sincerely,

Stanley M. Bergman
Chairman of the Board and Chief Executive Officer

 
 
 
 
A sampling of the noteworthy content in the Coronavirus (COVID-19) Education Center from recent weeks includes: