EU and WHO Join Hands to Mitigate Impacts of COVID-19 in Maldives

The World Health Organization country office for the Maldives (WHO), with financial support worth EUR 1 million from the European Union (EU), will help improve emergency response capacities in the Maldives to mitigate the impact of COVID-19.

The support will focus on improving the management of COVID-19 cases. This will be done through provision of medicines, supplies and reagents to Hulhumale Isolation facility and Regional ICU facility and includes support to green medical waste management in selected facilities. Additionally, capacity building of critical care, case management and rapid response teams of the Huhumale Isolation Facility, Regional hospitals will be supported. A regional ICU facility will also be established with this support. As a result of the aid by the EU, access to COVID-19 patients to isolation and ICU care will improve.

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“The funding for the Maldives is another element of the EU’s global response to the coronavirus pandemic,” said Ambassador of the Delegation of the European Union to Sri Lanka and the Maldives H.E. Denis Chaibi.“The EU partnership with the WHO and the Government of the Maldives will not just address the impact on the health sector but also pay special attention to vulnerable populations, working hand-in-hand with local communities. Strengthening response capacities of countries in the South Asian region is an important part of ensuring that we all recover from this crisis together. Green recovery is important to prevent future disasters. In the case of the Maldives which is a major tourist destination, not just the local population but also tourists from the EU and elsewhere may benefit from a better response capacity of the medical system.”

“The support from EU has been very timely and efficient.” stated Dr Shushil Dev Pant, Acting WHO Representative to the Maldives, “The support was much needed to operationalize the Hulhumale Isolation facility to meet the demands that come with higher number of cases, and to provide the best possible care for severe cases. The provision of life saving equipment and training critical team will improve recoveries.”

“WHO and the EU are major partners in health development and pandemic preparedness and response in WHO South East Asia Region and offer solidarity to support the needs of the health sector.”, Dr Pant added, “WHO is optimistic that the support we have brought to Maldives will help strengthen the Health System in the country and help current pandemic response as well as health care in future.”

His Excellency Minister for Health, Ahmed Naseem welcomed the EU contribution to the Maldives via WHO during his remarks. “WHO as a partner has been working very closely with us and I would like to extend my warm appreciation to the Director General of WHO, Madam Regional Director, former and acting WHO Representatives for the continuous support and assistance in COVID-19 response and management efforts.”

“Success in controlling the spread of COVID-19 in Maldives is mainly due to the assistance of WHO as well as partners such as the EU and neighbouring countries. I thank all of you for your kindness and for the help that you’ve rendered.” he stated.

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