European Union delivers medical equipment worth $80 million
Health Minister Dr Christopher Tufton (seated) tests one of the recently donated medical equipment. Sharing in the moment is EU Ambassador to Jamaica Malgorzata Wasilewska (second right) along with other stakeholders.
The Government of Jamaica on Wednesday received another donation of medical equipment and supplies from the European Union to help bolster the country's health system and fight the coronavirus (COVID-19).
The supply of equipment represents the second portion of medical supplies the EU has donated to Jamaica's health sector since the COVID-19 pandemic.
The shipment consists of 21 critical care electric beds, 39 patient monitors, 33 infusion pumps, 10 defibrillators, 6 transport patient monitors and other equipment specifically for maternal and child care.
The medical supplies were purchased by CEDI Europe BV from Italy, Germany, France, Spain, Hungary, Poland and Turkey, under the EU funded Program for the Reduction of Maternal and Child Mortality (PROMAC) and is valued at approximately €535,000 ( over J$80 million).
Health and Wellness Minister Dr Christopher Tufton, and Senator Kamina Johnson Smith, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade received the equipment on behalf of the Government and people of Jamaica from EU Ambassador to Jamaica Malgorzata Wasilewska and other Ambassadors from EU Member States, Dr Bernd Von Munchow-Pohl, Ambassador Germany, Denys Wibaux, Ambassador, France and Hugo Verbist, Ambassador Belgium.
"The European Union (EU) and its Member States are committed to supporting the fight against the coronavirus. We know only too well that the only way to stop its spread is by working together. Within this context our aim is to support Jamaica to strengthen the national health system to save lives and preserve people's health and well-being," Ambassador Wasilewska said at the brief handover ceremony.
The Ambassador noted that in the spirit of solidarity and friendship and, as part of the COVID-19 response, the EU is accelerating previously planned actions and shifting around funds and will be extending further support to Jamaica's health sector in short order.
The equipment will be distributed to hospitals across the country and medical personnel will be trained to use them by Medical Link, the local representatives of CEDI Europe BV.
In April, the EU donated 29 ventilators to the government of Jamaica. "I am pleased to share that the ICU and transport ventilators that were presented to the government in April have been installed and staff trained to use them. Recipient hospitals include Bustamante Hospital for Children, St. Ann's Bay Hospital, Spanish Town Hospital, Mandeville Regional Hospital, Cornwall Regional Hospital, and The National Chest Hospital', Ambassador Wasilewska noted.
The value of the two sets of equipment supplied to the government so far to strengthen the health system and support its fight against the coronavirus under PROMAC is about €1,3 Million (approximately J$ 220 Million). A third shipment is to arrive shortly, bringing the total value to over €1.8 Million (approximately J$289 Million).