YANGON – The United States Government is providing an additional $3 million to mitigate the spread of COVID-19 in Myanmar, bringing the total U.S. support for COVID-19 response in Myanmar to $16.5 million since February. The U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) is providing these additional funds for humanitarian assistance to address the spread of COVID-19 among vulnerable and conflict-affected populations.
“The United States is providing life-saving support to people in Myanmar through these contributions. The U.S. government contribution to Myanmar’s COVID-19 response is now nearly $16.5 million, and builds on our longstanding cooperation to improve health across the country. This assistance reaches millions of people in Myanmar, including communities affected by conflict.” said the U.S. Charge d’Affaires George Sibley. “U.S. assistance to address the COVID-19 pandemic comes on top of long-term investments in Myanmar that total more than $1.3 billion over the last twenty years, including more than $176 million in health,” he added.
The new $3 million of humanitarian assistance funding for COVID-19 response in Myanmar will help save lives through:
- Additional provision of water and sanitation supplies, including soap and handwashing stations to address water shortages and support hygiene for vulnerable populations, including those people living in IDP camps;
- Provision of critical cleaning supplies in areas with high risk of COVID-19 spread;
- Child protection and psychosocial services, including support to children affected by quarantine; and
- Prevention of and response to gender-based violence exacerbated by the stresses caused by COVID-19 on families and the economy.
The U.S. State Department and USAID are working with our partners, to adapt and contextualize existing humanitarian programs to fit local needs and improve COVID-19 readiness efforts around the world.
In addition, with $8.3 million of the total COVID-19 response for health assistance, the people of the United States are helping save lives by supporting Myanmar’s public health response in the following areas:
- Helping to screen and detect more cases, including through case investigations and contact-tracing;
- Supporting health care providers to respond safely and combat the spread of infection, including in conflict-affected areas and through ethnic health organizations;
- Providing expertise, training, and equipment to strengthen laboratories to scale-up testing; and
- Improving families’ knowledge of how to prevent and respond to the transmission of COVID-19, by producing and disseminating information in multiple languages and through various channels such as print and social media.
The United States is also continuing to provide technical assistance to the Ministry of Health and Sports in partnership with other global technical and donor partners, through the engagement of senior U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) epidemiologists and laboratory scientists, in response to the pandemic. CDC will provide ongoing technical support for active surveillance to enhance early case detection and to train the health workforce of Myanmar. CDC is providing laboratory technical assistance so that Myanmar public health professionals can best utilize test kits and supplies. The United States has also provided test kits and supplies to Myanmar through USAID, the Armed Forces Research Institute of Medical Sciences (AFRIMS), a joint U.S.-Thai collaboration, and other donors to Myanmar’s National Health Laboratory.
For decades, the United States has been the world’s largest provider of bilateral assistance in health. Since 2009, American taxpayers have generously funded more than $100 billion in health assistance and nearly $70 billion in humanitarian assistance.
For more information about USAID’s response to COVID-19, please visit: https://www.usaid.gov/coronavirus-covid-19