Russia may seem well equipped to handle the coronavirus pandemic—the nation reportedly has 27 ventilators per 100,000 citizens, compared to 18.8 per 100,000 in the United States—but there is much more to the story, experts say.

Many ventilators in central regional or district hospitals, regarded as the core of the health system outside big cities, were made in the 1990s, data provided to Reuters by Headway Group, an analytics firm that tracks government tenders, show. Such hospitals are often only equipped with five or six ventilators on average, it said. That estimate was based on data the company had compiled up to the beginning of 2019.

Older models lack the functionality of newer ones, including screens that give a full picture of a patient’s breathing process, two Russian doctors said. One of them, an emergency room doctor who regularly operates ventilators, complained that these machines cannot ventilate a patient’s lungs for as long as new ones.

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