While some parts of the world are experiencing a respite in COVID-19 cases, “countries in Africa, the Americas and Asia are now facing steep epidemics,” highlighted WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus at a recent media briefing. The world needs WHO now more than ever and the Organization continues to deliver support to countries facing ongoing challenges thanks to the generous support of its donors and partners. Democratic Republic of Congo: WHO delivers critical equipment with support from EU, Gavi and World Bank.

In recent weeks, in response to a deadly spike in COVID-19 cases, WHO urgently provided health facilities in Kinshasa with a supply of medical materials and equipment to strengthen care for a growing number of COVID-19 patients. Hospitals in the capital have been facing increasing pressure amid the circulation of variants of concern such as the Delta strain. The recent shipment is valued at US$200 000 and consists of respirators and accessories, oxygen concentrators, personal protective equipment and other items.

WHO’s activities to fight COVID-19 in DRC are supported by European Civil Protection and Humanitarian Aid Operation (ECHO), Gavi and the World Bank. WHO boosts COVID-19 response amid case surge

WHO recently delivered a substantial shipment of infection prevention and control supplies as well as COVID-19 laboratory diagnostic kits to the Ministry of Health in Monrovia. The supplies will both strengthen the country’s COVID-19 response and improve its preparedness for Ebola Virus Disease. The donation will help already stretched health facilities respond to a concerning rise is COVID-19 cases in the capital and surrounding areas. WHO has provided continuous support to Liberia through technical and financial support to fight the COVID-19 pandemic while ensuring uninterrupted access to other essential health services.

Mozambique: WHO and Swiss Development Cooperation donate COVID-19 testing machines WHO recently delivered three PCR machines to the National Institute of Health in Maputo with support from Swiss Development Cooperation. The three machines were acquired with Swiss Development Cooperation funds and are worth approximately US$150 000 and will substantially strengthen the country’s testing capacity. The current donation adds to 2 previous machines provided to Mozambique by WHO. Iraq: WHO builds critical care capacities for COVID-19

WHO recently completed training of trainers sessions for intensive care doctors and nurses in Iraq. The initiative is part of an ongoing response to demand for intensive care beds and critical care during the COVID-19 pandemic. COVID-19 has highlighted a significant need for intensive care and critical care capacity-building among health care professionals in Iraq. To address this need, 6 rounds of 3-day workshops were held in May and June 2021 to train 87 health-care professionals who are currently working in COVID-19 intensive care units from all over the country. These included 42 doctors and 45 nurses and anaesthesia technicians. Participants will go on to train additional personnel. Afghanistan: Russian Federation donated medical kits to support health-care delivery services strained by COVID-19

The shipment contains 100 emergency health kits, which serve the health needs of 200 000 people for 3 months. 20 cholera kits, will help treat 2000 patients, and 20 trauma kits will meet the needs of 1000 patients requiring surgical care in emergency situations. The donation provides much needed support to the country’s strained health system. WHO is working to distribute the supplies to health care facilities across Afghanistan to reach a wide range of beneficiaries, including those with limited access to health services. Costa Rica: Panama and Spain provide aid amid COVID-19 surge

Costa Rica recently received a loan of a mobile hospital from Panama while a humanitarian team from Spain arrived in the country to operate the mobile unit. The initiatives were funded by WHO and the Costa Rican Social Security Fund. The support comes at the most crucial moment so far during the pandemic in Costa Rica due to an overload in hospitalizations of COVID-19 patients.

Suriname: Canada and WHO donate protective equipment Canada and WHO recently delivered 300 000 units of surgical gloves and 18 000 surgical gowns to Suriname. The much-needed shipment is the second donation by the Government of Canada this year and will be directed to frontline health-care workers responding to a third wave of COVID-19 cases. The WHO Regional Office for the Americas assisted in the procurement and delivery of the materials.

The WHO Regional Office for the Americas recently acquired and donated 40 tonnes of medicinal oxygen to Bolivia to treat COVID-19 patients. The initial shipment will benefit hospitals facing a rise in severe cases of COVID-19 in intensive units. The donation is valued at approximately US$42 800. Global Citizen, WHO and Sony Music Latin artists renew their commitment to campaign against COVID-19 in the Americas.

The WHO Regional Office for the Americas is continuing a collaborative effort with Global Citizen and Sony Music Latin recording artists on campaigns to inform and educate people in the Americas about the spread of COVID-19. “Color Esperanza 2021: Protect Yourself and Protect Others,” features five Latin artists who have come forward to help share messages on preventing the spread of the coronavirus through their social media channels using the lyrics of the song “Color Esperanza”. The 2021 campaign prioritizes prevention — mask-wearing, social distancing, handwashing and staying home — and will address important mental health issues related to the virus. Funding from the campaign is also helping PAHO respond to the specific and emerging health needs of the region.

Europe: New WHO information series highlights the transformation of primary health care during COVID-19 Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, primary health-care systems in the WHO European Region have met the unprecedented surge in needs. Several countries responded by accelerating long-standing reforms and showed different degrees of adaptation and transformation. The WHO European Centre for Primary Health Care in Almaty, Kazakhstan, has now launched a new information series that highlights this transformation. Pragmatic, country-specific and action-oriented, the new PHC Country Vignettes will contribute to cross-country exchange of experiences and perspectives. WHO: breakthrough initiative launched to empower civil society organizations in health emergency responses.

To engage and empower civil society organizations –critically important partners in reducing the impact of COVID-19 among hard-to-reach vulnerable groups – WHO/Europe has launched an initiative that will help them further contribute to the current COVID-19 response. This initiative will directly invest in 11 selected CSOs within 8 Member States. It aims to demonstrate how small investments in CSOs can have a meaningful impact.

The selected organizations work directly with refugees and migrants, Roma populations, people living with disabilities, older people, religious leaders, women, and communities impacted by conflict Without the support of donors and partners, WHO would not be able to reach these countries in need and help them make it through the COVID-19 pandemic. WHO thanks all governments, organizations and individuals contributing to the COVID-19 response around the world since the beginning of the outbreak, and in particular those who have provided fully flexible contributions, to ensure a comprehensive fight against the disease.

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