The Philippine received on Saturday, Aug. 28, a total of 100 oxygen concentrators donated by the Australian government, as the country battles the spread of the highly-transmissible Delta variant of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19).
The arrival of the oxygen concentrators came just five days after Australian Foreign Minister Marise Payne announced the donation during the Joint Ministerial Meeting between the Philippines and Australia’s foreign and trade officials.
“These critical medical supplies will help the Department of Health (DOH) to respond to the current increase in COVID-19 cases,” Australian Ambassador Steven Robinson said in a Twitter post.
The shipment arrived at the PairCargo Warehouse of the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) and was welcomed by Robinson, Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) Secretary Teodoro Locsin Jr., and Health Undersecretary Leopoldo Vega. World Health Organization (WHO) representative to the Philippines Dr. Rabindra Abeyasinghe also witnessed the arrival.
The ambassador shared via his post a video clip and photos of the arrival of the oxygen concentrators.
“Tonight, I personally handed over Australia's initial donation to @DFAPHL Sec @teddyboylocsin and @DOHgovph USec Vega. These oxygen concentrators, announced just five days ago, complements our already extensive #COVID19 bayanihan with the Philippines,” he tweeted.
There is currently a global shortage of oxygen concentrators as many countries deal with the impact of the Delta variant.
Robinson noted these medical supplies are critical to “enhance the Philippines’s capacity to respond to this challenging phase of the #COVID19 pandemic.”
He said in a statement that the swift delivery of the oxygen concentrators was part of the assistance of Australia to the Philippines in the latter's COVID-19 response.
“This donation complements our extensive COVID-19 support to the Philippines under our ‘Partnerships for Recovery’. Our ongoing co-operation underscores the strong partnership that Australia and the Philippines have shared over the last 75 years.”