Canadian gov’t donates P30.6M worth of N95 face masks to DOH
MANILA, Philippines — The government of Canada has given 120,000 pieces of N95 face masks worth around P30.6 million to the Department of Health as part of its support to Filipino healthcare workers battling the coronavirus disease pandemic.
Canada is “collaborating closely” with the Philippine government in the fight against COVID-19, Canada’s Ambassador to the Philippines Peter MacArthur said during the turnover event at the DOH office in Manila on Wednesday.
“This includes regional cooperation with the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (Asean) and its member states because only together can we defeat the virus,” he also said during the handover according to a statement released by the embassy on Thursday.
The face masks were provided through a partnership between the Canadian government, the Asean Secretariat, and the Asean Member States, which aims to mitigate biological threats, the embassy noted.
The embassy said that since 2013, this partnership has been working on strengthening biological security, biological safety, and disease surveillance capabilities in the region.
“Building on this long-standing partnership, Canada has provided additional support to Asean partners to combat the COVID pandemic. This includes a CAD$ 4.5 million (approx. PHP165 million) in-kind contribution of personal protective equipment items to six Asean member states, including the 120,000 masks for the Philippines,” MacArthur said.
According to the embassy, the donated face masks were part of an estimated P110.3 million (CAD$ 3 million) in bilateral assistance Canada has pledged to assist the Philippines in the fight against COVID-19.
Canada also previously announced the addition of approximately P84.6 million (CAD$2.3 million) to women’s health initiatives that help mitigate the impact of COVID-19 on maternal, newborn, and child health, as well as on women’s sexual and reproductive health and rights.
These initiatives are the Sexual Health and Empowerment Philippines project with Oxfam in cooperation with the DOH; and the multi-country Enhance Mother/Newborn/Child Health in Remote Areas through Health Care and Community Engagement project implemented by Adventist Development and Relief Agency Canada.
Canada likewise committed CAD$5 million (approximately P183 million) to the International Atomic Energy Agency to support the provision of COVID-19 diagnostic kits, equipment, and training in nuclear-derived detection techniques to over 20 countries that have requested assistance, including the Philippines.
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