Guyana is among fifteen other countries in the Caribbean Region and eight in Central and South America that will benefit from COVID-19 support from the Pan America Health Organisation (PAHO).
In a press statement issued today, it was noted that the health organisation received a pledge of CDN$7.5 Million (USD$5.3 million) for the response to COVID-19 in 23 countries of the Americas from the Government of Canada.
This contribution is expected to focus on the provision of personal and protective equipment (PPE) for healthcare workers and vulnerable populations, to mitigate the spread of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19).
PAHO launched a Donor Appeal in March 2020 to support COVID-19 preparedness the region of the Americas, seeking US$94.8 million for six months.
So far, it has received US$52.7 million for urgent preparedness and response activities in response to COVID-19, including US$23.2 million channelled through the World Health Organization (WHO) and US$29.5 million directly to PAHO.
Director of PAHO Dr. Carissa Etienne said ‘this outbreak has caused large upheavals in the health systems of our region, and our countries need all the support they can get.”
She noted that the support from Canada “for health protection measures in the Caribbean, Central and South America will help their health workers deal more effectively with these challenges.”
Meanwhile, Canada’s Minister of International Development, Karina Gould, stated that the government has recognised the importance of PAHO’s role in Latin America and the Caribbean and believes that international cooperation is key to fighting the virus.
“The COVID-19 virus knows no borders and cooperation with international partners such as PAHO has been key to fighting this global pandemic and minimising its impact on health systems,” the Minister said.
Canada had previously contributed CDN $1.5 million to PAHO earlier this year to support the overall regional response to COVID-19.
Dr. Etienne and Minister Gould also met on Thursday to further discuss how to address the immediate needs and impact of the pandemic in the region of the Americas.