The masquerade

Adrian Klaus, deputy security officer and the person in charge of equipment at SEM, is responsible for procuring masks.

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Back in February 2020 – when getting hold of masks had not yet become an issue in Switzerland – Adrian Klaus wanted to find out how many masks were in SEM’s inventory. “We had between 10,000 and 15,000 in stock, but needed a lot more,” he remembers. The crisis unit, which had been established in the meantime, decided SEM needed one million masks. Adrian Klaus therefore began searching, which was not an easy task because masks were either in short supply or sold out. “After an extensive search the masks finally began arriving in batches, but there was a run on them by the staff.” The same applied to disinfectant. “We just bought what we could. Some of the material was held up at customs,” says Klaus, describing the situation at the time. When the situation eased off in the summer Klaus was able to increase his stock to 200,000, and there the inventory has remained until now. Looking back, he can now say: “Fortunately we didn’t overreact and pay for masks up front.”

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COVID-19 material used by SEM

Posters 1'200 in up to 16 languages
Stickers 150 on social distancing rules
Dispensers 180 for disinfectant
Plexiglass partitions 560 for interviews
Tape (in metres) 3'300 for closing off rooms/areas
Disinfectant (in litres) 3'500 for hands
Masks 890'000 according to FOPH guidelines