JICA emergency assistance to strengthen Covid-19 Response in Sri Lanka

(COLOMBO, LANKAPUVATH) – Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) and Sri Lanka Ministry of Health, have signed a bilateral agreement for JICA’s emergency technical cooperation grant to strengthen the COVID-19 Response in Sri Lanka.

Major General Dr. Sanjeewa Munasinghe, Secretary to the Ministry of Health and Yamada Tetsuya, Chief Representative of Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) Sri Lanka Office signed the agreement for the Project for Strengthening COVID-19 Response.

This project primarily focuses on provision of equipment, which are essential for COVID-19 treatment such as Ventilators, ICU beds, Ultra sound scanners, blood gas analyzers etc. These equipment and materials are to be provided for four selected hospitals, namely Base Hospital Theldeniya, Base Hospital Warakapola, Base Hospital Welikanda, and Base Hospital Pimbura.

In addition, the project will provide equipment for establishing a PCR laboratory in District General Hospital Hambantota to strengthen its infection diagnostic capacities in the Sothern Province where currently many challenges to expedite PCR tests are experienced.

Further, the project provides training seminars to medical staff in these selected hospitals on strengthening nosocomial infection prevention, patient safety, and case management under spread of COVID-19 and other infectious diseases through Japanese experts remotely. Total budget allocation to this project is USD 1.8 Million (approximately Rs.350 Million) under Japan’s Official Development Assistance.

JICA believes this project will be able to significantly contribute to the COVID-19 testing, diagnosis, and treatment in Sri Lanka and to mitigate the difficult situation the country is facing now.

Senior officials from the Ministry of Health and JICA Sri Lanka Office, including Dr. Sunil De Alwis, Additional Secretary, Ministry of Health and Takashima Kiyofumi, Senior Representative, JICA Sri Lanka Office also attended the occasion, held at the Ministry of Health, Colombo strictly adhering to the health guidelines and the COVID-19 preventive measures.

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