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UK to Provide 2.67 Million Pounds in Funds to Help Pakistan Healthcare System amid Covid-19 Pandemic

UK to Provide 2.67 Million Pounds in Funds to Help Pakistan Healthcare System amid Covid-19 Pandemic

The British High Commission in Islamabad said the funding is the "first in a series of measures to give wide-ranging support to help the poorest and the most vulnerable people in Pakistan during the coronavirus outbreak".

Health workers wearing protective gear move a body of a man who died from the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), outside an isolation ward at the Ayub Teaching Hospital in Abbottabad, Pakistan. (Reuters)

The UK on Saturday announced it will provide 2.67 million pounds in funds to Pakistan for vital health support to combat the coronavirus pandemic and protect the poorest and most vulnerable people in the country.
It said the 2.67 million pounds support will ensure funds for vital health support to Pakistan, build stronger systems to detect and test for COVID-19 and support communities to have the right information to protect themselves and others. It said the funds will help people in 27 districts of Pakistan. 

"It comes alongside Prime Minister Imran Khan's appeal to overseas diaspora to help fundraise for the COVID-19 response, and the UK's support for Pakistan's debt relief and loan postponements from the G20 group of countries," according to the statement.
The British High Commissioner to Pakistan, Christian Turner, said that across the world millions of people were being affected by COVID-19 and expressed confident in Pakistan's resilience and capability to defeat the pandemic.
"UK health support of 2.67 million pounds will help the Government of Pakistan detect COVID-19, protect communities and help those most affected. We stand shoulder-to-shoulder with our friends in Pakistan at this difficult time,' he said.
According to the statement, the wider package of support which the UK will roll-out over the coming weeks will repurpose Department for International Development's programme of assistance to ensure it helps those at risk and the most vulnerable, during the coronavirus response.
The UK also announced to provide one million pounds for the rapid response of controlling locusts in affected areas in Pakistan, which were having a devastating impact on crops and livelihoods. The funding came as the number of coronavirus cases rose to 7,638 in Pakistan.

 new cases and 42 new deaths from the virus on Saturday, taking the total number of reported cases to 14,378 and deaths to 480.
Indian health ministry official Lav Agarwal told reporters some districts had not reported any new cases. But he urged people to stick to social distancing rules. “This is a battle for which we have to stay vigilant continuously,” he said.
India is in the fourth week of a nationwide shutdown, though the government has said it will allow industries in the countryside to reopen and some farms to resume work next week.
Sri Lanka's government said on Saturday it would partially ease restrictions from April 20.
Bangladesh has sent troops out into the streets to help enforce a shutdown on travel and restrictions on gatherings.
In Chittagong, the crowds of workers on the streets said they were still waiting for last month's wages.
Police had talked to one factory owner who had promised to make the payments by April 28, local officer Mohammad Zamiruddin told Reuters.
Bangladesh’s government last month launched a $588 million package to help companies in the crucial garments sector pay staff during the pandemic, but manufacturers have said it is not enough.
Among the countries in South Asia, India has reported 14,378 cases, including 480 deaths, Pakistan has reported 7,638 cases, including 143 deaths and Afghanistan has reported 933 cases and 30 people have died so far. Sri Lanka has reported 248 cases and seven deaths. Bangladesh has reported 2,144 cases and 84 people have lost their lives to the virus. Maldives has reported 34 cases and no deaths, Nepal has reported 30 cases and no deaths whereas Bhutan has reported five cases and no deaths.

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