The government of Switzerland has sent rapid antigen test kits, ventilators, oxygen concentrators and other medical examination materials worth Rs. 800 million to Sri Lanka.
A special flight carrying 16 tons of material touched town at Bandaranaike International Airport (BIA) from Zurich in the early hours of Tuesday (June 08).
The Swiss aid is intended to benefit the population throughout the country, while witnessing the concrete sign of friendship and long-term collaboration between the two countries, the Embassy of Switzerland in Colombo said in a statement.
“The aid shipment includes 50 ventilators provided by the Swiss Army Pharmacy, 150 oxygen concentrators, and other medical supplies (including equipment to measure oxygen saturation). In addition, the Swiss Health Ministry is providing more than half a million Rapid Antigen Tests.”
The statement said the Swiss Humanitarian Aid had immediately set up a crisis team including the Swiss Embassy in Colombo to provide Sri Lanka with medical assistance in the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic as quickly as possible, in view of the serious health situation in the island nation and in response to a request for assistance from the Sri Lankan authorities.
Switzerland has already extended support to Sri Lanka in the fight against the pandemic last year to the tune of around Rs. 20 million. In October 2020, Switzerland had financed a PCR testing facility at the BIA and provided 39,000 test kits.
“The aim of this contribution was to support the repatriation of Sri Lankans, particularly the migrant workers who had lost their jobs abroad due to COVID-19 outbreak, the embassy said. “For another LKR 22 million, the Swiss Embassy supports local partners in providing COVID emergency aid to the poorest and especially low-income families.”