The U.S. Government's COVID-19 Response in Belarus

Speeches Shim

Wednesday, September 23, 2020

The United States Government, through the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), has provided $1.7 million to help Belarus respond to the COVID-19 pandemic. This assistance is helping prepare laboratory systems, activate case-finding and event-based surveillance, support technical experts for response and preparedness, and bolster risk communications. Medical and technical experts are helping Belarus to prepare for COVID-19 cases, communicating accurate public health information to the public, and supporting community engagement activities with a particular focus on infection prevention and control, including the provision of medical supplies and ensuring access to clean water, sanitation, and hygiene in COVID-19 designated health care facilities, social service centers, and other government facilities.

USAID is supporting media campaigns to inform citizens on how they can help stop the spread of the virus.

In addition, USAID is helping to mitigate the secondary effects of the pandemic by supporting social and mental health support to front-line workers in addition to other social service activities.

We are also expanding our work to stop trafficking in persons to ensure vulnerable groups have access to vital public health information, including the design and distribution of COVID-19 prevention advice and healthcare service leaflets. Given the increased demand for migration and trafficking in persons advice services caused by the COVID-19 outbreak, USAID is strengthening its support to the safe migration hotline.

PROGRAM HIGHLIGHTS

PREVENTING AND RESPONDING TO COVID-19 IN BELARUS

  • 9 educational videos on using personal protective equipment and improving assistance to patients distributed to all hospitals with COVID-19 infected patients.
  • A brochure on social distancing and two videos on prevention practices distributed for wide public use.
  • Information materials for medical workers and the public developed by UNICEF with USAID support have been developed, including posters, a memo for parents on how to spend time with their children and a training manual "Emergency psychological assistance for health care professionals in emergency situations". The manual describes the specifics of providing emergency psychological assistance during COVID-19 and in other stressful life circumstances.
  • Seven brochures on psychological health and overcoming stressful situations have been developed by the specialists of the Department of Psychotherapy and Medical Psychology of the Belarusian Medical Academy of Postgraduate Education (BelMAPE). The brochures on seven topical issues – “Depression”, “Can't Fall Asleep?”, “How to Resist Panic Attacks and Overcome Fear?”, “Burnout Syndrome”, “Childhood Fears”, “Anxiety disorder”, “How to survive the death of a loved one?” – will be distributed in healthcare institutions of Minsk and the Minsk region.
  • Almost 1,000 frontline medical workers participated in a series of 7 webinars on diagnostics, treatment, and prevention of COVID-19 organized for frontline specialists who work with patients infected with COVID-19 by the USAID-funded COVID19 Response project implemented by UNICEF in Belarus. A video conference on the practical use of oxygen concentrators for respiratory support to patients with pulmonary pathology during COVID-19 was organized together with Belarus’ Ministry of Health and attended by 210 Belarusian frontline medical workers.
  • Individual psychological consultations and distance relaxation support organized within the project covered about 1,400 individuals, including frontline medical workers and the general public.
  • USAID supported the delivery of over 12,500 liters of sanitizer to the Emergency Response Center of the Ministry of Health of the Republic of Belarus and two correctional colonies; as well as 230 distance thermometers to orphanages, boarding schools, social service centers, and prison colonies throughout Belarus.
  • 25,276 liters of sanitizer , 4,685 liters of antibacterial soap , and 2,235 elbow dispensers delivered to the Republican Transfusiology Center and the Emergency Response Center as well as to orphanages, institutions for children with disabilities, and Belarus' border checkpoints around the country.
  • 60 bacterial air recirculators and 40 pyrometers were procured and delivered to the educational institutions of all the six Belarusian regions within the COVID-19 response project implemented by UNICEF Belarus with USAID support.
  • With USAID support, IOM Belarus ensured the safety of human trafficking survivors and NGOs that provide direct full-scale reintegration assistance to victims and carry out trafficking prevention interventions across Belarus, through the procurement and delivery of 4,000 medical masks, 10,000 protection gloves and 255.5 litres of hand sanitizer.

PREPAREDNESS AND RESPONSE ACTIVITIES TO COMBAT THE GLOBAL NOVEL CORONAVIRUS

  • USAID supported the delivery of 250 oxygen concentrators . The equipment from the world's leading manufacturer will be transferred to the republican reserve. Within the expected second wave of COVID-19 outbreak, the oxygen concentrators will be distributed by the Republican Center for Medical Response to those health facilities where additional oxygen support will be most required. This oxygen therapy equipment is vital for case management of mild to severe COVID-19 infection for patients with reduced oxygen saturation due to COVID-19 infection.

For more information about how USAID is responding to COVID-19 across the world, please visit www.usaid.gov/coronavirus.

For details on specific in-country response activities, please contact USAID at press@usaid.gov.

MISSION

Victoria Mitchell Avdiu
Belarus Country Office Director
USAID Regional Mission to Ukraine and Belarus
4 Igor Sikorsky Street Kyiv, Ukraine 04112
E-mail: vmitchellavdiu@usaid.gov

HEADQUARTERS

Stephen Wiese
Desk Officer for Belarus
U.S. Agency for International Development
1300 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW Washington, DC, USA 20523
E-mail: belarusdesk@usaid.gov 

 

Last updated: December 22, 2020

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