Public and Private Sectors Tackle COVID-19 Together
As the outbreak of COVID-19, a disease caused by a novel strain of coronavirus, evolves around the world, the public and private sectors across the Middle East and North Africa are diligently working together to find solutions. Global biopharmaceutical companies are leading the way in developing new treatments and testing existing medicines, while governments are directing resources to where they are most needed and protecting the intellectual property of potential treatments and vaccines. These public-private partnerships have also supported MENA’s health care workers on the pandemic’s frontlines.
For example, biopharmaceutical company MSD donated over $500,000 to support Lebanese health institutions, medical associations and citizens whose access to routine health care may have been interrupted by the coronavirus. In Jordan, MSD contributed $200,000 to aid ongoing efforts in the fight against COVID-19.
In an effort to relieve pressure on health care systems and help those in need of treatment for chronic conditions, Boehringer Ingelheim Jordan donated diabetes and cardiovascular medicines to the Jordanian Ministry of Health.
In Egypt, Bayer partnered with the Good Makers Foundation as part of its ongoing “Protection” initiative to help the Egyptian government and health authorities raise awareness about the importance of precautionary measures in combatting COVID-19, as well as provide personal protective equipment (PPE) to those on the frontlines.
And, in Saudi Arabia, the Saudi government joined forces with the World Health Organization (WHO) to deliver medical equipment and supplies to Sana’a and Aden, Yemen. The shipments included PPE for health workers, laboratory screening tests, trauma medicines and other critical medical supplies to support COVID-19 preparedness. Saudi Arabia also donated $10 million to support response efforts in the MENA region, and an additional $10 million to provide WHO Yemen with essential equipment and supplies.
The public and private sectors will continue to play essential roles to combat COVID-19, both through monetary and in-kind donations, and by supporting research and development efforts to help find treatments. The world is relying on all of us to work together to slow the virus’ spread.