Ian Patrick, FISM News
As the number of active COVID-19 cases in India continues to rise (on May 4th, the country registered 382,691 new cases alone), the U.S. is keeping to its promise to help India by sending aid. During a press briefing, White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki said the U.S. is accomplishing this promise through six “aid shipments.”
In cooperation with the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), who is funding the supply shipments, the U.S. is distributing useful supplies to the Indian Red Cross for the Indian government to use, including “oxygen and oxygen supplies, N95 masks, rapid diagnostic tests, and medicine.”
She said, “More flights are on the way, with total assistance expected to exceed $100 million.” Within the supplies are about 1,500 of the oxygen cylinders, 550 “oxygen concentrators,” 2.5 million N95 masks with “an additional 12.5 million” ready in case more are requested, and an order of AstraZeneca manufacturing supplies which will allow India “to make over 20 million doses” of their COVID-19 vaccine.
In terms of testing and other COVID treatments, Psaki said “We’ve also provided 1 million rapid diagnostic tests. And this weekend — this past weekend, USAID delivered 20,000 treatment courses of the anti-viral drug remdesivir to help treat hospitalized patients.”
Psaki also said the CDC is cooperating with Indian health experts in a variety of areas.
And CDC experts will work in close coordination with India’s public health experts in the following areas: laboratory surveillance and epidemiology . . . emergency response and operations development; bioinformatics for genomic sequencing and modeling.