ISLAMABAD, Jul 06 (APP): The United States government on Wednesday donated four mobile laboratories to the National Institute of Health (NIH) to diagnose COVID-19 and other communicable diseases, especially in remote locations with limited access to testing.
The mobile laboratories, provided through the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) were formally received by Federal Minister for Health Abdul Qadir Patel.
The ceremony was held at the NIH and attended by US Ambassador to Pakistan Donald Blome, and officials from the Ministry of Health and the NIH.
It was told that the modern facilities would improve the accuracy of diagnoses, reduce the testing turnaround time, and better protect healthcare workers. It was further mentioned that USAID funded a global health chain supply programme while implementing parameters of Chemonics International Inc.
Ambassador Blome commended Pakistan’s effective response to the COVID-19 pandemic and highlighted its successful vaccination campaigns to quickly inoculate its citizens.
He commented on the success of the Pakistan-US collaboration to strengthen healthcare systems as part of the 75 years of bilateral relations. Today’s donation supported this partnership by providing Pakistan with new tools to respond quickly to future threats, he said.
“These mobile laboratories will strengthen the diagnostic capacity of the provincial health departments,” the ambassador said. “They will enable the government to respond quickly and effectively in hard-to-reach remote areas during emergencies, or an outbreak and epidemic.”
The minister expressed gratitude for the US government’s support to improve health services in Pakistan as a reflection of the strong relations between the two countries.
Since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic in early 2020, USAID has worked to save lives and contain the deadly disease in more than 120 countries, including Pakistan. Its ongoing assistance provides emergency relief, strengthens health systems, supports vaccine readiness and distribution, improves public health education, and protects healthcare workers and facilities.
According to the details, the United States has provided nearly 61.6 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines to Pakistan, one million COVID-19 rapid diagnostic test kits, and critical health supplies and training to health workers.
These efforts are part of the nearly $70 million in direct support and $9.2 million of in-kind support that the U.S. government has donated to assist the Pakistani people.