October 20, 2021
United States Announces Additional Support to Combat COVID-19
San Salvador— The U.S. Government, through the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), will provide an additional $2 million to its implementing partners EpiC (FHI360 and Palladium), GHSC-PSM (Chemonics), and the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) to support El Salvador in its fight against the COVID-19 pandemic.
The announcement was made during the closing ceremony of a training for health personnel from vaccination centers in the Central Region. The Minister of Health, Francisco Alabi; the Chargé d’Affaires of the United States in El Salvador, Jean Manes, and the PAHO/WHO Representative, Giovanni Escalante, presided over the event.
“Since the beginning, we have accompanied El Salvador in its mission to safeguard its population, which is why we have contributed, in addition to the donation of more than three million vaccines, with $30 million in support in the fight against COVID-19 for laboratory and hospital equipment, personal protection supplies and economic recovery. I am pleased to announce that the United States, through USAID, will provide an additional $2 million to its implementing partners to continue to support the fight against the pandemic and save lives,” said Manes.
The main objective of this USAID technical assistance is to strengthen the capacity of the government and the Ministry of Health to assess needs and provide support to mitigate COVID-19 transmission, morbidity and mortality.
The new funds allocated by USAID will be used to purchase essential equipment, including tablets and laptops for real-time data transmission from vaccination centers. Other activities include clinical training of vaccinators from all vaccination centers in the country; support for programming the ARC-GIS data system to track all vaccination data in real time from the 162 vaccination centers throughout the country at the COVID National Operations Center; support to increase the operational capacity of CENABI (National Biological Center); support for the development of laboratory capacity to conduct COVID variant testing at the University of El Salvador and the National Institute of Health; the development of a remote thermal monitoring system at CENABI and regional sites for remote tracking of temperatures in cold chain facilities to ensure quality and reduce risks, among other areas of assistance.
In coordination with the Ministry of Health’s central level, regional directorates and the Basic Integral Health System (SIBASI), priority areas of reinforcement for critical competencies were identified in the vaccination centers. Including the group of 15 staff members receiving their certificates of participation today, a total of 672 health workers from vaccination centers in the Central Region have already been trained. The training process is expected to conclude in December with the Paracentral, Eastern and Western regions, for an overall total of 5,000 people trained.