Nouakchott – As part of a broad effort to prevent, detect and respond to the global COVID-19 outbreak, the United States Government has committed $250,000 to UNICEF in Mauritania. This funding, provided through the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), will support the Mauritanian Government’s COVID-19 response plan in the following areas:
- Infection prevention and control, specifically in health-care facilities.
- Communications support to educate Mauritanians on steps they can take to prevent and respond to the spread of the virus .
- Critical hygiene-related supplies for hand washing and safe handling of medical waste
U.S.Ambassador to Mauritania Michael Dodman said, “We are proud to assist the Mauritanian Government’s implementation of their comprehensive COVID-19 response plan. Through this project and others, the United States continues its long and successful history of efforts to improve the health and well-being of the Mauritanian people.”
Over the past 20 years, the United States has invested $424 million in total assistance in Mauritania, including $27 million in health assistance.
From 2015 to2017, the United States trained and supported more than 100 Mauritanian health professionals through the Frontline Epidemiological Training Program (FETP), support for infection prevention and control guidelines, and water, sanitation and hygiene activities, thus equipping the country to face both past epidemics such as the Crimea Congo Hemorrhagic Fever (CCHF), Ebola, and the current COVID-19 pandemic.
For decades, the United States has been the world’s largest provider of bilateral assistance in public health. Since 2009, American taxpayers have generously funded more than $100 billion in health assistance and nearly $70 billion in humanitarian assistance. This generosity is underscored by our contributions to several crucial multilateral partners, which includes:
- U.S. support to the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) of nearly $1.7 billion contributed in 2019. This support will be critical going forward, as refugee populations are uniquely vulnerable to the COVID-19 pandemic.
- U.S. contributions to the UN Children’s Fund in 2019 totaled more than $700 million. The life-saving activities UNICEF has been doing for years — such as immunization campaigns and health and sanitation training and assistance — will save lives as we fight this dangerous pathogen.
Because an infectious-disease threat anywhere can become a threat everywhere, the United States calls on other donors to contribute to the global effort to combat COVID-19. For more information about USAID’s response to COVID-19, please visit: https://www.usaid.gov/coronavirus-covid-19
Nouakchott on May 5th, 2020.