Maldivian resort chain Universal Enterprises, on Saturday, donated 20,200 COVID-19 test kits to the Health Ministry.
The test kits were presented by Universal Enterprises’ Compliance Manager Mohamed Riza to Health Minister Abdulla Ameen in a ceremony held at the National Emergency Operations Center on Saturday afternoon.
Health Ministry has announced the test kits donated by the resort chain is the same kind used by the main government hospital Indhira Gandhi Memorial Hospital (IGMH).
The donation was made to support the Maldivian government’s efforts to boost the country’s testing capacity.
Maldives identified its first coronavirus case on March 7, and declared a state of public health emergency over the pandemic four days later on March 11.
While coronavirus cases had initially been restricted to resorts and safaris, and later quarantine facilities holding inbound travelers, Male’ City identified its first coronavirus case on April 15, prompting a city-wide lockdown and a nationwide ban on nonessential travel.
The populous Male’ City has since become the epicenter of the coronavirus outbreak in the country, contributing to over 90 percent of the total cases.
Maldives has recorded 1,883 coronavirus cases, 33 percent of whom are Maldivians, while the remaining 67 percent are foreign nationals. 1,018 people – making for 54 percent of total coronavirus cases – are Bangladeshis. The rest of the coronavirus cases include 625 Maldivians, 190 Indians, 23 Nepalese, and 11 Italians.
The 1,883 people are confirmed to have contracted the new coronavirus in Maldives includes 717 people who have since made full recoveries, bringing down active cases to 1,157. Meanwhile, eight coronavirus patients have died from complications – half of whom are Bangladeshis.
Maldives currently has three coronavirus testing facilities in the country, all three of which are located in the capital; IGMH, Maldives Police Service’s Forensics Department and the ADK Hospital.
World Health Organization (WHO) continues to provide its support to Maldives, and has donated a total of 15,000 test kits on separate occasions.
However, the donation of 20,200 test kits by Universal Enterprises marks the single largest donation of test kits made to the country so far.