US extends COVID support to Bhutan
The U.S. Government, through the US Agency for International Development (USAID), donated 15 new ventilators to Bhutan to assist the country in its fight against COVID-19.
Announcing the assistance, the US Ambassador to India Kenneth I. Juster said, “The US Government is pleased to donate 15 ventilators to the Royal Government of Bhutan. We look forward to continued collaboration between our countries as we work together to combat the COVID-19 pandemic.”
The ventilators are compact and easy to deploy. They support a range of care functions, allowing healthcare workers to respond to the fluctuating needs of COVID-19 patients. In addition to the ventilators, USAID is funding a package of support that includes warranties.
This donation builds upon the $1 million that USAID committed to the Bhutan Foundation in April to support COVID-19 relief efforts. In coordination with the Royal Government of Bhutan, USAID and the Bhutan Foundation are strengthening diagnostic laboratory capabilities and clinical case-management, providing virtual training for health care providers and lab personnel, and developing communications materials on COVID-19 prevention, readiness, and response. The grant also includes micro-, small-, and medium-sized enterprise support initiatives to assist with Bhutan’s economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic. In September, USAID, in coordination with the Bhutan Foundation, also donated 200,000 cloth masks to the Ministry of Health of the Royal Government of Bhutan for distribution to vulnerable communities, including the elderly and pregnant women, to prevent the spread of COVID-19.