US COVID-19 aid to PH now worth P978-M

Willard Cheng, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Jul 21 2020 02:18 PM

The US government has delivered millions of dollars worth of COVID-19 assistance to the Philippines. Screengrab from the US Embassy YouTube post #FriendsPartnersAllies: U.S. Government COVID-19 Assistance to the Philippines 

MANILA - The United States has delivered a total of P978 million (almost $19.5 million) worth of COVID-19 government assistance to the Philippines, according to a video posted by the US Embassy. 

The aid was provided through the US Department of Defense, USAID, and the US Department of State. 

“We would like to applaud and thank all Filipino frontline responders as well as our Philippine government and NGO partners for their hard work and sacrifices to fight the pandemic. Together we will overcome these challenging times. Ingat po tayo lahat,” US Ambassador Sung Kim said in the video. 

The US Defense Department has delivered P10 million worth of PPE and medical supplies to hospitals, medical clinics and local health offices across the Philippines to support frontline workers, as well as 1,300 cots valued at P9.3 million. 

USAID Philippines mission director Lawrence Hardy said the USAID has “made significant new investments” since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic with ongoing programs valued at more than P5 billion a year across health, economic development, education, governance and environment sectors helping address the impact of the virus. 

It has been aiding the Philippine health department boost testing capacity and has partnered with international organizations to upgrade laboratories and expand specimen transport systems across the Philippines. 

The USAID said it was also helping prevent the spread of COVID-19 with training programs at local government, barangay and household levels and is expanding community access to water, sanitation and hygiene services, commodity, and information in underserved communities hardest hit by the virus. 

There is also humanitarian and recovery assistance in vulnerable communities in Mindanao displaced by conflicts and recent earthquakes, economic assistance, efforts to strengthen logistics and transportation networks for the delivery of medical products, food and other essential goods. 

Under the “Deliver-e,” local farmers are being assisted with the delivery of more than 220,000 kilos of vegetables and fruits to buyers. A “Fish tiangge” online seafood marketplace connected 6,000 Filipino fisherfolk with 300,000 household buyers. 

In partnership with the DSWD, the “Relief Agad” web app was launched to facilitate the rapid distribution of Philippine government financial assistance to Filipinos affected by the pandemic where SAP beneficiaries may register their SAP cards.