The military has received around 57 million pesos of medical equipment, supplies and personal protective equipment (PPE) from the Australian government as part of its anti-pandemic effort for the Philippines.
Australian Ambassador to the Philippines Steven Robinson AO handed over the donations Tuesday to defense and military officials led by Defense Secretary Delfin N. Lorenzana at the southern port of Manila.
“Throughout this unpredictable Covid-19 pandemic, I am very happy that Australia is able to provide flexible and responsive support to the Philippines,” the envoy said while handing over the articles.
“This additional medical and personal protective equipment will be critical to VLMC’s Covid-19 testing efforts and the treatment of Covid patients,” he added.
Australia made the donation as its three warships are docked in Manila after conducting maritime exercises with a Philippine Navy vessel as part of the Indo-Pacific Endevour 2021 (IPE21).
Items donated included high-flow oxygen machines, stretcher, defibrillator, disinfection kits, automated RNA extraction kit, viral RNA extraction kit, reagents and RT-PCR detection, face masks, face shield, level 3 and level 4 PPE sets, eye protector and KN95 masks.
Lorenzana expressed the Department of National Defense gratitude and appreciation for Australia’s latest assistance.
“The Australian government has expanded the coverage of its defense cooperation program to include the pandemic needs of Filipino soldiers; a gesture that conveys the message that we are not alone in this fight, ”said Lorenzana.
“Certainly, these donations will accelerate the daily clinical management and the quality of care and services that AFP’s medical branch is supposed to provide,” he added.
The Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) said the aid was the third tranche of grants from the Australian government under the enhanced defense cooperation program between Australia and the Philippines.
AFP chief Lt. Gen. Jose Faustino thanked the Australian government and assured donations would be maintained and maximized.
“Please be assured that we will do everything in our power to ensure that donated medical equipment and supplies are properly maintained and maintained in excellent condition, as well as to maximize their use to improve the delivery of a medical response within AFP’s health care system, ”he said.