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USAID airlifts urgent health supplies combat deadly covid-19 surge

USAID airlifts urgent health supplies combat deadly covid-19 surge

The U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) announced emergency assistance to help the Nepalese health system in its struggle against the COVID-19. The agency’s historical investment, over the last 20 years, totals $600 million to improve the quality of health services in the poor nation.

The first of three flights departed for Kathmandu carrying the most-needed PPE medical equipment like surgical masks, face shields, and gloves. Not only Nepal but other countries in South Asia as the region experiences this latest surge and needs help right now.

In May, USAID has provided more than $15 million to help the Government of Nepal scale-up COVID-19 testing, contact tracing, treatment, and infection prevention.

USAID’s Office of Press Relations says in the statement that the agency also helps procure oxygen-related supplies and repair oxygen-generating systems throughout Nepal. This recent assistance, in addition to support over the past 15 months, brings USAID’s total assistance to Nepal for COVID-19 to more than $50 million.

Nepal suffers from pandemic’s consequences

Over a year, USAID support to fight COVID-19 has benefitted more than 60 percent of Nepal’s population. The Agency has helped expand Nepal’s corona testing lab network from a single lab to 87 labs to ensure nationwide coverage.

In 2021 only, USAID has provided Nepal with COVID-19 testing equipment such as:

  • PPE for health care workers,
  • oxygen cylinders,
  • pulse oximeters,
  • disinfection supplies,
  • thermometers and the arterial blood gas machines, and
  • other life-saving medical equipment.

In November 2020, USAID donated 100 ventilators to 51 hospitals throughout Nepal and the National Ambulance Service to aid critically-ill COVID-19 patients.