The World Health Organization (WHO) handed over medical supplies and equipment to the Ministry of Health last Friday during a handover ceremony held at the Central Medical Store in Kotu.
Items vary in size and value and include surgical masks and disposable gloves, triple-wrapped insulated cryobox and freezer boxes. The items, hailing from various countries, namely China, India and the United Arab Emirates, cost more than two hundred and seventeen thousand dollars (US$217,000).
Welcoming the gathering, Babanding Sabally, director of pharmaceutical services at the ministry, reiterated that quality health services mean availability of essential drugs and medical products.
He praised the WHO for its consistent support since the start of the pandemic, acknowledging that the UN agency has also played a crucial role in advocating for support from other partners to complement the government in the fight against the disease. pandemic.
“Our partners are aware of this fact and therefore they always come to our aid to complement whatever the government is doing.”
The UN agency, he added, has been supporting the country’s health care sector not only technically, but by providing much-needed financial support to the country.
Introducing the papers, Dr Desta Tiruneh, WHO Representative to The Gambia, recalled that with the onset of the Covid-19 pandemic, the past few years have been a difficult journey for people in The Gambia and around the world. .
He observed that since the start of the pandemic, WHO has worked in tandem with the government, the United Nations system, the private sector and multilateral and bilateral partners to support the development and implementation of a strong strategy and guidelines for the response to the pandemic.
“The close collaborative partnerships we have fostered have fostered a rapid scale-up of the pandemic response in the country and helped us cushion the drastic blow of Covid-19.”
Dr Tiruneh described that the event was not only a celebration of such fruitful partnerships across sectors, but also a move to further cement the relationship in a demonstration of shared commitment to improving public health in The Gambia. .
“I would like to take this opportunity to sincerely thank our esteemed partners for their continued support of WHO’s emergency work in The Gambia. In particular, we would like to thank our most generous partners, including the governments of the United Kingdom, from Canada, the United States, Germany, France, the Netherlands and Azerbaijan.”
On receiving the articles, Dr Ahmad Lamin Samateh, Minister of Health, hailed the long-standing partnership between the Gambian government and WHO.
This mutual partnership, he noted, is growing stronger, recognizing that the WHO, as a global leader in the health sector, has truly done its job as expected by the peoples of the world.
“All over the world, there must certainly be coordination of every activity of life, otherwise countries and people will have their own notions, norms and ways of doing things. But we are lucky to have an institution like the WHO which harmonizes all of this and sets out benchmarks that countries could use as standards and guidelines to measure performance, productivity and all the parameters that need to be measured.”
The WHO office in The Gambia, Minister Samateh acknowledged, has really fulfilled this role, adding that since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic, the WHO country office and the entire United Nations system in The Gambia have worked harmoniously exchanging ideas to ensure that the country responds adequately to Covid-19.