PAYNESVILLE, Montserrado – ArcelorMittal Liberia has donated additional medical supplies to aid in the country’s fight against the Coronavirus pandemic. The oxygen concentrators, oxygen cylinders, and medical regulators are essential tools in treating patients with respiratory issues.
Making the presentation to Health Minister Wilhemina Jallah on May 8, the company’s head of government relations, Marcus Wleh, said the donated items can aid in supporting patients experiencing breathing complications related to COVID-19.
He suggested that the ministry distribute some of the equipment to the Buchanan Government Hospital in Grand Bassa and at the Jackson F. Doe Memorial Hospital in Nimba. Nimba and Grand Bassa host ArcelorMittal’s main operations in Liberia.
“We’re in those communities, so we’re trying as much as possible to see how we can direct some of the support there,” he said.
Dr. Jallah received the supplies on behalf of the government and praised ArcelorMittal for the company’s continuous interventions.
“On behalf of our president, President George Manneh Weah, and the Ministry of Health and [the National Public Health Institute of Liberia], we want to appreciate ArcelorMittal for their continual support to us,” she said.
“They have been supporting us before. But during this COVID-19 pandemic, we have received a good note of the US$100,000 which we are chopping down slowly to make sure that it is used for the intended purposes and we will be coming back to you all to tell you what we are using that money for.”
The health minister agreed to distribute some of the equipment to the two major hospitals in Grand Bassa and Nimba, in addition to the 14 Military Hospital.
The health minister assured the company of the proper usage of the supplies, adding that they will be used to assist hospitals even beyond the COVID-19 pandemic.
Previously in March, ArcelorMittal committed US$100,000 worth of medical supplies to support the government’s efforts to curb the spread of the Coronavirus disease. It said it has also supplied sanitation and hygiene supplies to local authorities Grand Bassa, Bong, and Nimba.
The company disclosed in a press release at the time that it was also urgently seeking to procure medical equipment for its own hospitals, although it is proving to be challenging because of the global shortage of medical supplies.
The mining giant also said its doctors were contributing their skillset and expertise to assist local health authorities with their strategic COVID-19 health plans, in addition to its community relations department carrying out awareness messages in its surrounding communities.
Currently, the number of total confirmed Coronavirus cases in Liberia stands at 211, including 35 healthcare workers. At least 85 patients have fully recovered, while 20 of the patients, including 2 health workers, have died.
Featured photo by ArcelorMittal/Winston Daryoue