CNN, which has been labelled as fake news by US President Donald Trump, today ran a news story claiming that Tesla founder Elon Musk failed to deliver ventilators to hospitals that he had promised. But soon it turned out to be a lie as Musk himself came forward to post documentary evidence on Twitter showing that hospitals have received ventilators from Tesla.
In a story titled “Elon Musk’s promised ventilators never delivered to California hospitals, governor’s office says”, CNN had claimed that California governor’s office have told them that they have not received any ventilator from Tesla, one month after Musk had promised to give them 1,000 ventilators, which have become the most crucial life-saving equipment during the global Coronavirus pandemic.
On 24th March, Elon Musk had announced that his company had bought 1255 ventilators from China, which were delivered to California state. He had said that China had an oversupply of ventilators, and Tesla China team shipped FDA approved ResMed, Philips & Medtronic ventilators to Los Angeles.
But the CNN story said that none of the ventilators promised by Musk have been delivered to hospitals, according to the governor’s office.
Reacting to the report on Twitter, Elon Musk quipped, “What I find most surprising is that CNN still exists”. Soon after, he posted a screenshot email exchange between Tesla and Los Angeles County Department of Health Services, which shows that the department had received the machines. In the email dates, Tesla’s Omead Afshar had written to the state wanting to know whether the ventilators were put into used. In reply, LA County health department’s Philip Franks had informed that the ventilators worked great during testing, and will be put to use from the next day. This proves that while CNN claims that governors office has said that they have not received the machines, the health department says they have, and are already using them.
Musk also posted a screenshot of a mail from Mammoth Hospital, expressing gratitude for the ‘generous gift to our hospital from Mr Musk and Tesla’. This means that not only the county health department, but individual hospitals have also received the ventilator sent by Tesla.
Not just Musk, other Twitter users also exposed the lie by CNN, by posting tweets of hospitals confirming the receipt of ventilators from Tesla. For example, Martin Luther King, Jr. Community Hospital (MLKCH) had tweeted on 10th April thanking Musk and Tesla, with a photograph showing the boxes they had received from the electric car maker.
Similarly, another hospital had tweeted on 5th April confirming that they had received the machines from Tesla. They had posted a photograph of their medical team with a device they had received, with a ‘Thank You Tesla’ note pasted over it.