Johannesburg – United States ambassador to South Africa Lana Marks recently visited the OR Tambo International Airport to oversee the arrival of 600kg of respirators donated by the US to support the recovery of Covid-19 patients.
Worldwide Flight Services (WFS) welcomed Marks at its cargo terminal at the airport.
Marks was joined by the South African Civil Aviation Authority (SACAA) manager for cargo security, Andrew Dhlakama, and USAID mission director John Groarke to witness the first shipment of US-made ventilators.
The US government is supplying up to 1 000 ventilators and accompanying equipment to South Africa to assist with its response to the coronavirus as part of a $40 million donation.
The ventilators are specialised medical equipment used in ICU to support individuals whose lungs are not working adequately despite receiving oxygen, assisting them with their breathing as they recover.
The ventilator donation is in addition to previously announced US support to South Africa for its Covid-19 response, which has also included multi-million dollar funding from the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and USAID, as well as donations of personal protective equipment from the US department of defence.