The Catalan Government has joined the initiative led by the Vicente Ferrer Foundation and Open Arms to send the first flight with essential material to India to support the health emergency that the country is experiencing in the second wave of contagion of the virus.
COVID-19. The plane, a Boeing 787, is scheduled to take off from Barcelona airport on Thursday, May 7, bound for Bangalore.
This first humanitarian flight is a solidarity action of the civil society, led by Open Arms and the Vicente Ferrer Foundation. This reponds to the emergency appeal of the Government of India last week through the Department of Foreign Affairs, Institutional Relations and Transparency and the Department of Health.
Some of the organizations that have joined the humanitarian action are DKV Assegurances, Agentes Solidarios, Hospital Sant Joan de Déu (HSJD) and Hospital Parc Taulí. This initiative has also been supported by the respiratory therapy company Esteve Teijin, the transport company CH Robinson, the logistics company Trans Junior and the Indian community in Madrid.
The Catalan Government, through the Department of Health, will provide 233 oxygen concentrators, 254 respirators and 260 breathing pumps, a material valued at €709,000.
According to the Indian Ministry of Health, the country has registered, in the last 24 hours, about 400,000 new cases and 3,449 deaths. Of these new cases, 18,972 have been registered in the state of Andhra Pradesh, where the Vicente Ferrer Foundation works and acts.
The Minister of Health of the Catalan Government, Alba Vergés, and the Minister of Foreign Action, Institutional Relations and Transparency of the Catalan Government, Bernat Solé, highlighted that “both the speed in the response to the international request of the government of India, as well as doing it jointly with entities of the civil society with transformative capacity, such as the Vicente Ferrer Foundation and Open Arms and in coordination with the Red Cross of the State of Andhra Pradesh“. Additionally, Vergés and Solé stated that this initiative "allows the Catalan Government and entities to join forces and complement each other to be more efficient, and make sure that oxygen generators reach hospitals as soon as possible”.
The Vicente Ferrer Foundation, which last week launched the emergency campaign "Oxygen for India", manages the Bathalapalli Hospital in Anantapur (southern India). This center has gone from an oxygen consumption of one tank every 15 days to one tank every two days.
According to Òscar Camps, founder and director of Open Arms, "the second wave of COVID-19 is devastating in India. The country's authorities have called for international solidarity, to the citizenship, through social networks in the face of the evident collapse of their health system and crematoriums. It is so good that this initiative promoted by civil society encourages the coordinated response of other agencies and organizations to provide resources to strengthen the capacity to respond to the health emergency in the areas most affected”.