The United States and India are partnering to strengthen the global response to COVID-19 on a range of issues such as addressing infectious disease outbreaks, strengthening health systems, securing global supply chains and vaccine support.
Since the outbreak of the pandemic, the U.S. Government, through USAID, has allocated more than $226 million in COVID-19 relief to India including nearly $150 million to support India’s response to the second wave and more than $55 million in emergency supplies.
With this support, USAID is helping India provide care for those affected by COVID-19, disseminate essential public health messages, address stigma, improve access to pandemic-related mental health services, strengthen COVID-19 testing, and mobilize innovative financing solutions to bolster emergency preparedness, response, and recovery. In addition, USAID worked to keep India’s brave frontline health workers safe so they can continue to save lives. Since March 2020, USAID has supported more than 15,000 healthcare facilities to strengthen COVID-19 preparedness and response, including training nearly 250,000 health workers on infection prevention, mitigation, and control, benefitting more than 65 million Indians and counting.
USAID is committed to supporting India’s vaccination efforts. USAID has provided more than $40 million to support India’s COVID-19 vaccination program. As of November 2021, nearly two million Indians have been vaccinated through USAID supported vaccination sites.
LIFE-SAVING VACCINE SUPPORT:
USAID is partnering with India’s Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, as well as state governments, to support vaccine supply chain logistics, address misinformation and vaccine hesitancy, and train healthcare workers to deliver vaccines safely and effectively across India. USAID is supporting the VaxNow campaign, an initiative with private and public stakeholders, civil society, community leaders and media to vaccinate 10 million vulnerable people across India as quickly as possible.
EMERGENCY RESPONSE TO THE COVID-19 SURGE:
In response to the devastating COVID-19 surge in April 2021, USAID rapidly mobilized assistance to save lives, stop the spread of COVID-19, and meet the urgent health needs of the Indian people. The United States urgently deployed seven emergency air shipments to India, delivering 20,000 treatment courses of Remdesivir to assist in medical treatment; one million COVID-19 rapid diagnostic kits to prevent community spread; 2.5 million N95 masks to protect millions of healthcare professional; nearly 1,500 oxygen cylinders to address critical shortages; 210 pulse oximeters to help India’s frontline healthcare workers manage cases of COVID-19; and an oxygen generation unit.
To continue addressing India’s immediate oxygen needs, USAID has delivered 1,000 compatible oxygen concentrators to healthcare facilities in Maharashtra, Delhi, Chhattisgarh, and Jharkhand. USAID also supported the Government of India in its efforts to install more than 580 oxygen generating plants across states. USAID is providing technical assistance to several state governments to support the installation of oxygen generation plants provided by the Government of India.
FACILITATING POST-PANDEMIC ECONOMIC RECOVERY:
USAID helped to launch and is supporting the REVIVE Alliance, a philanthropy-led initiative, which is assisting informal sector workers whose livelihoods have been impacted by COVID-19, with a focus on women and youth, to gain access to financial services provided by the formal financial sector. The Alliance aims to reach 200,000 direct beneficiaries over three years (70,000+ to date).
USAID is supporting Self-Employed Women’s Association (SEWA) Bharat to advance the rights and capacities of more than 135,000 women across ten states (Uttarakhand, Punjab, Rajasthan, Gujarat, Delhi, Bihar, Jharkhand, Madhya Pradesh, West Bengal, and Nagaland) in India by increasing their access to loans, assets, and training on financial and digital literacy.
The USAID-supported COVID Action Collaborative (CAC), a platform for industry and development partners to join forces to support COVID-19 mitigation efforts in India, is addressing the impact of the pandemic and reaching neglected and vulnerable individuals by strengthening the capacity of local organizations, local governments and associations of healthcare providers, small retailers, and street vendors, and linking them with government and private sector resources. With an India-wide network of over 340 organizations, CAC has benefitted 5 million beneficiaries with critical COVID-19 services to date.
In addition, USAID in collaboration with the United States International Development Finance Corporation (DFC) has mobilized $205 million through three credit guarantees to bring much-needed financing to Micro, Small & Medium Enterprises (MSMEs), which have seen a significant downturn in business in face of the COVID-19 crisis. There is also a special focus on women and gender, as women continue to be disproportionately impacted by the economic effects of the pandemic.
LEVERAGING PRIVATE SECTOR RESOURCES:
The USAID-supported SAMRIDH Healthcare Blended Financing Facility has committed $27 million to support high impact health solutions that are aligned with India’s national health priorities, such as oxygen delivery systems, cold chain storage for vaccines, supply chain management for COVID-19 medicines, and more, that can be rapidly expanded to address the COVID-19 pandemic. Till now, SAMRIDH has supported over fourteen high-impact business solutions for vaccine supply chain and deployment as well as COVID-19 mitigation, leveraging $85 million to directly impact 20 million lives. Under this partnership: