Responding to a call by the World Health Organization (WHO), Estonia is allocating €100 000 from development and humanitarian aid instruments for containing the spread and mitigating the consequences of the coronavirus in the world’s poorest countries.
In its call to countries and health organisations across the world, the WHO stressed that in fighting the coronavirus, we are as strong as our most vulnerable health systems. Foreign Minister Urmas Reinsalu said that Estonia, in solidarity with other governments, wishes to contribute to fighting the global epidemic. “The coronavirus has spread across the world. If we wish to get the spread of the virus under control and protect the health of us all, we must be able to do so in all countries across the world,” Reinsalu said.
Cases of COVID-19 have reached Africa and the Middle East, where the virus could further spread to conflict zones, and humanitarian aid workers in countries with vulnerable health systems are concerned. In late March, the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) and the WHO issued a $2 billion plea for global consolidated humanitarian aid to combat COVID-19.
The international appeal aims to help people in the world’s poorest countries. Particular consideration is given to vulnerable groups like the elderly, the disabled, women and children. The funding raised would mainly be used for medical and lab equipment procurements for countries in need of assistance, and for the water, sanitation and hygiene cluster in densely populated areas and camps. Assistance will also be provided to inform the population about the spread of the virus, train and instruct health professionals, and provide logistical support for delivering aid.
In January this year, the WHO classified COVID-19, which began spreading in late 2019, an international health crisis and in mid-March, it upgraded its classification to a global pandemic.
Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Estonia