United Nations Development Program (UNDP) in Zimbabwe, through the Global Fund, will procure personal protective equipment (PPEs) for frontline health workers to a value of US$4.1 million.
The US $4.1 million was sourced from savings realised from the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria (Global Fund) programme in Zimbabwe according to the organisation’s Communications Associate Anesu Freddy.
The UNDP Zimbabwe Resident Representative, Georges van Montfort said, “Through the Global Fund, the United Nations Development Programme in Zimbabwe is glad to support the Coronavirus (COVID-19) response, through the procurement of personal protective equipment for frontline health workers to a value of US$4.1 million dollars.”
Freddy says, “The personal protective equipment to be acquired includes over 710,000 surgical and respirator masks, 5 million surgical gloves, 20,000 medical gowns and 10,000 heavy duty aprons. The procurement will also include over 30,000 litres of hand sanitizer and other cleaning materials.”
The international organisation will be sourcing equipment from local companies where ever possible to promote Zimbabwean businesses according to UNDP Communications Associate.
“We are making all efforts for speedy delivery of the equipment,” Freddy says.
“However, due to increased global demand and the strain on freight and logistics services, deliveries will be staggered – some expected to arrive in 2-3 weeks, others anticipated by the end of May 2020.”
The government has been encouraging local companies to start producing PPEs with demand on global suppliers increasing.
Besides PPEs, the UNDP is partnering the Government, sister UN agencies and private sector to engage communities on information dissemination; support youth-led business working on the COVID-19 response, and to support the informal sector.
“Further options for Global Fund support to the COVID response by the health sector are also being considered,” Freddy says.