US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has committed $3.6 million to assist India's response to the COVID-19 epidemic, US Embassy in Delhi on Tuesday said.
"These resources will support prevention, preparedness, and response activities in India. This initial tranche of funding will seek to further strengthen and support the Government of India's efforts to increase laboratory capacity for SARS-COV-2 testing, including molecular diagnostics and serology," US Embassy in India said in a release.
With 3,604 more COVID-19 cases reported in the last 24 hours, India's tally of coronavirus cases has reached 70,756.
US Embassy said the funds will also be used to support the development of Infection Prevention and Control (IPC) centers of excellence that can improve the ability of hospital networks to detect COVID-19 and strengthen local health systems through enhanced surveillance and monitoring systems.
"The CDC will work with local partners to assist in the development of a strong public health workforce to support India's capacity to respond not only to this pandemic but to future threats as well," the release said while adding that the scope of support will include planning for health emergency operations centers to further strengthen public health emergency management capacities.
In addition to that, the CDC India program will provide "technical assistance for the Government of India's ongoing crisis emergency and risk communication efforts."
"Since early January, the CDC's India Office has been collaborating with sub-national and national government institutes to support the COVID-19 response in India. Collaboration efforts are focused on lab strengthening, infection prevention and control, health workforce development, emergency management, risk communication, and community engagement," the US Embassy said.
The CDC has also conducted trainings across India for healthcare administrators, physicians, nurses, and hospital staff on preparedness and response, infection prevention and control, laboratory operations, and field epidemiology to equip frontline response workers with the necessary skills to collect, analyze, and interpret data, and contribute to evidence-based decisions.
The US Embassy while pointing out, that for decades, the United States has been the world's largest provider of bilateral assistance in public health, said: "In India, US government agencies, including the US Agency for International Development (USAID), the Centers for Disease and Control and Prevention, and other Department of Health and Human Services agencies, have provided more than $1.4 billion in health assistance and nearly $2.8 billion in total assistance over the last 20 years."
The coronavirus cases in US have surpassed 1 million while the fatalities have crossed 80,000.
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