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U.S commits an additional K30 billion to Zambia’s COVID-19 fight

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The United States government has pledged to commit an additional 230 billion Kwacha to the Zambian government to respond fight against covid-19 pandemic.

In a statement made available to the media in Lusaka yesterday, United States of America Public affairs Officer Sean Mclntosh said that the US government has continued to demonstrate its global leadership in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic to respond to the threat worldwide.

Since the start of the pandemic in Zambia, the U.S. government, through the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the Department of Defense, the U.S. President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR), and the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), has provided over five hundred million kwacha K500 million in support of Zambia’s efforts to combat COVID-19.

“The U.S. government agencies work directly with the Zambian government and other partners across health, education, and other sectors to protect public health and save lives’’, Mr McIntosh said.

He stated that the US government Support Vaccinations, through USAID and CDC, and has further committed funding and critical technical and logistical support to the Ministry of Health to assist with planning, coordination, and delivery of safe and effective COVID-19 vaccines for Zambians.

The US Government has established and Strengthened Testing Capacity for COVID-19 in Zambia using the infrastructure and other testing commodities to enable accurate COVID-19 results and high levels of testing throughout the pandemic.

Mr Mclntosh further said that the Us government has supported for influenza surveillance and HIV and tuberculosis testing at the University Teaching Hospital (UTH) and Tropical Disease Research Center, CDC and USAID have provided technical assistance, quality controls, reagents including empowering Health Care Workers.

He further said that the US government In partnership with the Ministry of Health, USAID, CDC, and DOD supported and trained health care workers to treat COVID-19, provided personal protective equipment to keep them safe, and assisted with temporary human resource surge capacity.

]Mr Mclntosh said through PEPFAR, the U.S. government worked with the Ministry of Health to establish systems allowing people living with HIV to collect six months of antiretroviral drugs at once, limiting their potential exposure to COVID-19.

“the U.S. government helped Strengthen Surveillance Capacity and establish a functional call center at the Disaster Management and Mitigation Unit, develop standard operating procedures and guidance on screening, testing and isolation of persons with suspected COVID-19 infection, and supported contact tracing, home-based care, and quarantine procedures,” He said.

He further said that the U.S. government is helping to strengthen the field epidemiology capacity and outbreak response and surveillance system at district and provincial levels.

Through USAID, the U.S. government has increased the resilience and preparedness of local government authorities, supporting a national center of experts that customized USAID pandemic guidance and best practices for Zambian conditions, provided on-call support to district officials across the nation, and funded outreach programs .

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