The Government of the United States of America today, donated medical equipment worth USD 124,671, to assist the Maldives in combatting COVID-19.
The medical equipment was handed over symbolically at an event held virtually, by the Deputy Chief of Mission of the Embassy of the United States of America, Mr. Martin Kelly, to Foreign Secretary, Abdul Ghafoor Mohamed. This event was witnessed by USAID Mission Director, Mr. Reed Aeschliman, Minister of State for Health, Dr. Shah Abdulla Mahir, Secretary, Multilateral at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Dr. Hala Hameed, and senior officials from the Ministry of Health and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
This generous donation from the Government of the United States was facilitated by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) to increase the capacity and enhance the preparedness of the health sector of the Maldives to support the COVID-19 response and recovery efforts. The donated medical equipment includes 184,000 units of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) such as gloves, KN95 masks and protective goggles. The donations also include 600 fingertip pulse oximeters and 1,200 batteries for the pulse oximeters. This critical medical equipment would not only complement the Government’s efforts to control and contain the spread of COVID-19 but also play a vital role in ensuring safety for the health care workers and front-line workers combatting the pandemic. Speaking at the event, Foreign Secretary, Abdul Ghafoor Mohamed noted that the United States has always proven to be a close and a reliable friend, especially during challenging times such as now. Noting the announcement by the United States Government which included the Maldives among the first countries that would receive vaccines from the United States, Foreign Secretary Ghafoor thanked Secretary of State, Antony Blinken and the United States government for the continuous unwavering support extended to the Maldives and noted that such generosity and friendship from close partners have increased the capacity of the country’s front-line workers to combat the spread of the virus as well as address long-term goals such as reviving the economy.
The United States has so far contributed over USD 9.1 million to the Maldives COVID-19 response and recovery efforts. This includes a grant aid of USD 2 million, multiple donations of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), PCR machine, ventilators, and related equipment, as well as donations through several multilateral agencies such as IAEA and UNICEF. The medical equipment that were handed over today is the most recent donation of critical supplies from the US towards this effort.
In his speech, Mr. Martin Kelly reaffirmed the commitment of the Government of the United States to continue working together to further strengthen the dynamic partnership between the two countries. USAID Mission Director, Mr. Reed Aeschliman similarly reassured to continue the ongoing partnership between Maldives and USAID in over coming the pandemic and other long-term developmental challenges.
Minister of State for Health, Dr. Shah Abdulla Mahir also spoke at the ceremony and expressed the gratitude of the Government of Maldives for the donation from USAID.