Stamford, CT – As COVID-19 infected millions around the world and forced families into isolation, Americares launched into action, responding in more than 30 countries with critically needed protective gear and training for frontline health workers. Since launching its response last February, the health-focused relief and development organization has dedicated every resource to ensure health workers stay safe and can continue their lifesaving work. Americares response also included telehealth consultations to ensure patients continued to receive care during community lockdowns and medical facility closures, launched public education campaigns to combat misinformation and made water system improvements to help slow the spread of the virus. The “Americares COVID-19 2020 Special Report” published recently details its global response to the crisis.
Since the start of the pandemic, Americares has:
Provided more than 14 million protective supplies including masks, gowns, gloves and disinfectants to 30 countries including the United States;
Supported health facilities in all 50 U.S. states, the District of Columbia, the Northern Mariana Islands, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands;
Continued primary care services, providing 291,059 patient visits at Americares clinics in Colombia, El Salvador, India, Peru and the United States;
Reached more than 73,000 people with COVID-19 health education in five countries;
and supported 498 water system improvements, including hand washing stations, in eight countries.
“A year later, health workers continue to face unprecedented challenges as they work to fight COVID-19,” said Americares Chief Medical Officer Dr. Julie Varughese. “The devastating global death toll—including more than 500,000 documented COVID-19 deaths in the U.S.—is a reminder that we must do more to support frontline health workers and protect our loved ones and communities.”
Going forward, Americares COVID-19 response will continue to meet the needs of health workers and protect the health of low-income and uninsured families in underserved communities. This includes continuity of quality health services, access to essential medicine and supplies, education for health workers and community members, mental health support and vaccine readiness. Americares will also continue public education campaigns around COVID-19 prevention, including mask wearing, physical distancing and hand washing.
Americares has a long history of responding to infectious disease outbreaks, including cholera, Ebola, dengue and Zika outbreaks. The organization has professional relief workers ready to respond to disasters at a moment’s notice and stocks emergency medicine and supplies in warehouses in the U.S., Europe and India that can be delivered quickly in times of crisis.
Americares helps communities prepare for, respond to and recover from disasters; increase access to critical medicine and medical supplies; improve and expand clinical services; and prevent disease and promote good health. Since its founding more than 40 years ago, Americares has provided more than $19 billion in aid to 164 countries, including the United States.