India has sent essential medicines and hospital consumables to the Maldives to assist the counrty in their fight against COVID-19. Indian Air Force (IAF) C-130 aircraft airlifted 6.2 tonnes of essential medicines and hospital consumables to Male in Maldives under Operation Sanjeevani on Wednesday.
“These medicines and consumables were procured from eight different suppliers in India; however, due to the 21-day lockdown imposed in India to contain COVID-19, these medicines could not be transported to the Maldives by the suppliers through any other means,” Indian Air Force said in a statement.
At the request of the Maldives government, the IAF aircraft activated Operation Sanjeevani and lifted these medicines from airports in New Delhi, Mumbai, Chennai and Madurai before flying to the Maldives. The Indian Army facilitated the transport of these medicines and consumables from warehouses across India to the respective airports.
Among other things, these medicines include influenza vaccines, anti-viral drugs such as lopinavir and ritonavir (which have been used to treat patients with COVID-19 in other countries), medicines for cardiac conditions, kidney ailments, hypertension, high blood pressure, diabetes, arthritis, allergies and cancer treatment, anticonvulsants, as well as consumables such as catheters, nebulisers, urine bags and infant feeding tubes.
Earlier, India had sent 5.5 tonnes of essential medicines to the Maldives on March 14. India had also sent a 14-member COVID-19 Rapid Response Team of doctors and specialists enhance preparedness. The team worked closely with health authorities in Male and outlying islands.
The Maldives is the first country in India”s neighborhood to have received essential medicines since the lockdown commenced in India. The airlift of essential medicines, signals India”s commitment to keep supplies of essential medicines open even in the most challenging times as the South Asian region combats the COVID-19 pandemic.