CASTRIES, St Lucia (CMC)— The Government of Brazil has donated 6,000 COVID-19 test kits to the Organization of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS), in a bid to help countries in the sub-region in the fight against the pandemic.

When COVID-19 was declared a global pandemic in March 2020, the OECS embarked on a rigorous response to mitigate its effects on member states and this response included renewed partnerships with development agencies, a new partnership with the private sector, and support from bi-lateral friends.

Earlier this month, the government of Brazil donated US $100,000 to the OECS in support of their response to obtain testing supplies.

So far, 8000 swabs/sample kits have already been distributed to the nine participating member states of the OECS Pharmaceutical Procurement Services (PPS).

Of that amount, 2,000 PCR test kits have been donated to St Lucia, while another 2,000 have been earmarked for Grenada given the recent cluster of COVID-19 cases.

The remaining test kits will be kept in storage to assist member states that may need them in future.

Ambassador of the Federative Republic of Brazil to St Lucia and the OECS, Anuar Nahes, said this initial donation is just the beginning of Brazil’s willingness to assist the OECS region.

“The Brazil Cooperation Agency has asked me to convey to you that they are ready to do more. With the exception of vaccinations, they are ready to share much-needed supplies with the OECS and its member states.”

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