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Aug 31, 2022

Belize Receives $2 Million in Medical Donations from India/PAHO

At the start of the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020, Belize, through the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, submitted a proposal to the UN-India Development Partnership Fund to assist the country in its fight against the pandemic. A two-million-dollar sum was approved and allocated in September of that year, for the purchase of medical equipment. However, as the pandemic evolved, the Government of Belize requested in May 2021, that the objectives of the grant be amended to focus more on infection prevention control for Caye Caulker, which needed a medical waste incinerator facility. It also requested two more coolers in which COVID vaccines could be stored. The requests required approvals and time extensions, and today, numerous pieces of medical equipment, were distributed to public hospitals and clinics across the country.  A ceremony to mark that achievement was held in Belize City and News Five’s Marion Ali was present. Here’s that report.


Marion Ali, Reporting

The three pieces of equipment on display today were samples of a much larger array of medical equipment that Belize has received through the kind courtesy of the Indian Government, channeled through the PAHO/WHO office. PAHO/WHO Representative in Belize, Dr Noreen Jack revealed what the equipment included.

Noreen Jack


Dr. Noreen Jack, PAHO/WHO Representative, Belize

“The equipment included patient monitors, delivery beds, other patient beds, EKG machines, trolleys, incubators. The incinerator will be received late in September and we anticipate two more coolers by the end of the year. At that time, we’d have accomplished all the grant’s objectives.”


The donation aimed to strengthen clinical management of COVID patients and reduce the risk of further spread of the disease, which C.E.O. in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Amalia Mai said complement the Ministry of Health’s priority areas. It is in times of need, she said, that partnerships in international cooperation are most important.


Amalia Mai

Amalia Mai, C.E.O., Ministry of Foreign Affairs

“Partnerships like that offered by the Fund has therefore been a saving grace through the recovery. The unpredictability of the crisis demanded the fast-track financing and adaptability of south-south cooperation. This is an excellent complement to the prevailing model of development assistance, especially as we work towards resilience and self-reliance.”


Dr. Jorge Polanco, Director of Hospital Services and Allied Health, represented Minister of Health Kevin Bernard.

Dr. Jorge Polanco, Director of Hospital Services and Allied Health
“The equipment will transition to improve patient-care for all patients who visit the health facilities. The incinerator for Caye Caulker will assist in the proper management and disposal of medical waste. Even though the incinerator was not part of the original proposal, the proposed amendment was accepted by the Indian Government, for which we are grateful.”


In response to a question we later posed, Polanco informed that a CT scan that was out of commission at the KHMH should be functioning shortly with the replacing of a part that is being purchased. Marion Ali for News Five.

Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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