A shipment of 28 000 medical gowns and 20 000 N95 medical respirators for healthcare workers have arrived in Armenia. The items will enable those on the frontline to respond effectively and safely to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The supplies were procured by WHO, with the financial assistance of the European Union, as part of continued support to help Armenia respond to the pandemic.
Head of the Delegation of the European Union to Armenia, Ambassador Andrea Wiktorin, the UN Resident Coordinator in Armenia Shombi Sharp and Coordinator of WHO health emergencies programme for the South Caucasus Vasily Esenamanov handed over the newly arrived protective equipment to Deputy Minister of Health of the Republic of Armenia Lena Nanushyan for further distribution in the country.
The gowns and respirators that arrived in Armenia were acquired considering the needs of country’s health system and will be provided exclusively to healthcare workers.
Since the start of the COVID-19 crisis, the European Union and WHO Regional Office for Europe have been actively supporting Armenia in its battle against the virus. On 20 June, a group of experts co-funded by the European Union and WHO arrived in Armenia to help scale up the response in the country. On 1 July, 10 000 tests were delivered, helping Armenia widen testing for COVID-19 across the country.
This support to Armenia is part of the European Union’s response to the outbreak of COVID-19, currently affecting more than 216 countries and territories. On 27 March 2020, the European Union announced an assistance package of €30 million to help prevent, detect and respond to the COVID-19 pandemic in six countries of Eastern Europe and the Caucasus, including Armenia.
The funds initially will be used to meet immediate emergency needs, such as procuring critical supplies for health-care workers, frontline responders and patients. In the longer term, the assistance will go towards strengthening the country’s capacity to respond to public health emergencies.