April 6, 2020.
SKOPJE – The U.S. Government has committed $1.1 million to mitigate the spread of the COVID-19 outbreak in North Macedonia. Through the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), the United States is providing these funds to the World Health Organization (WHO) and United Nations Children’s Fund – UNICEF to implement activities to support the country’s efforts to respond to the COVID-19.
USAID is closely coordinating with the Government of North Macedonia, international humanitarian partners, and other stakeholders to identify priority areas for investment.
“During this time of uncertainty and anxiety, working together is more important than ever,” said U.S. Ambassador to North Macedonia Kate Marie Byrnes. “I am confident that the support provided in this assistance package will make a substantial contribution in North Macedonia’s fight against COVID-19.”
Through this assistance, the U.S. government will support:
- Laboratory strengthening to prepare laboratory systems for large-scale testing of COVID-19.
- Surveillance and rapid response to enhance with case-finding and event-based surveillance for COVID-19. USAID also helps countries train and equip rapid-response teams to investigate cases and conduct contact tracing.
- Communications to help educate people on steps they can take to prevent and respond to the spread of the virus through country-specific media campaigns.
- Case management to strengthen clinical care while minimizing the risk of onwards transmission to others.
- Infection prevention and control to prevent and control infections in health-care facilities.
Over the past 20 years, the United States has invested nearly $11.5 million in health alone and more than $738 million in total assistance for North Macedonia making a positive difference for the citizens in a range of areas, including security, agriculture, civil society, economic development, job creation, women’s entrepreneurship, and education.
For decades, the United States has been the world’s largest provider of bilateral assistance in public health. Since 2009, American taxpayers have generously made available more than $100 billion dollars in health assistance and nearly $70 million in humanitarian assistance globally. This generosity is underscored by our contributions to several crucial multilateral partners, which includes U.S. contributions to WHO in 2019 exceeded $400 million, almost double the 2nd largest member state contribution. U.S. support to the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) is unmatched with nearly $1.7 billion contributed in 2019, because refugee populations are uniquely vulnerable to the COVID-19 pandemic. Support for the lifesaving activities of UNICEF has been an American priority for nearly 75 years, and U.S. contributions in 2019 totaled more than $700 million. Because an infectious-disease threat anywhere can be a threat everywhere, the United States calls on other donors to contribute to the global effort to combat COVID-19.