IsraAID Mobilizes to Send Medical Supplies to India

Catastrophic wave of COVID-19 infections leaves Indian hospitals struggling to cope.

28 April 2021. For immediate release:

IsraAID, Israel’s leading non-governmental humanitarian aid agency, will provide urgent support to Indian hospitals and healthcare workers as the country faces an unprecedented and devastating wave of COVID-19 infections, hospitalizations, and deaths. In the past week, daily cases have crossed 350,000 – the most of any country at any point during the pandemic – with many more likely to be going untested and unreported. Major shortages of medical supplies, including lifesaving oxygen, ventilators, syringes, and more, have left Indian healthcare providers struggling to cope with the influx of new COVID-19 patients.

In the coming days, IsraAID will dispatch medical equipment and supplies, including crucial oxygen concentrators, to Indian healthcare facilities and organizations. IsraAID will also explore technological solutions to meet gaps in COVID-19 response and care, including data management, logistical support, vaccinations, and more. The organization will also respond to the devastating secondary effects of the pandemic, including a growing mental health crisis, launching self-care programs for frontline health workers to build community resilience and “help the helpers”. IsraAID’s partners include the India-Israel Forum at Tel Aviv University, Indian civil society organizations and healthcare providers.

IsraAID has been at the forefront of the global response to the COVID-19 pandemic, reaching more than 8 million people across 17 countries worldwide. In February 2020, IsraAID sent medical supplies to Chinese hospitals experiencing shortages and provided remote self-care training for frontline Chinese health workers. Last month, the organization launched its Global Vaccine Access initiative in the southern African country of Eswatini, supporting the government as it plans and implements its nationwide COVID-19 vaccination program.

IsraAID has worked in India previously, providing relief distributions, psychosocial support, and water well rehabilitation in Kerala following devastating flooding in 2018. IsraAID has also worked extensively in the wider region, including in Nepal for four years after the 2015 earthquake.

Yotam Polizer, IsraAID’s CEO, said:

The scale of the crisis currently unfolding in India is simply overwhelming. As a humanitarian organization that has responded to COVID-19 in 17 countries up-to-now, we felt we could not just stand by. We have ongoing partnerships on-the-ground in India and we look forward to working side-by-side with Indian organizations to both respond to this emergency and prepare for the future. With life in Israel returning to a pre-pandemic “normal”, it is crucial to remember our shared responsibility to partner with communities facing the worst of it. The pandemic will not be over for anybody until it is over for everybody.

Milette Shamir, VP International of Tel Aviv University, said:

TAU has a long history of partnering with Indian academia, business and civil society through its India-Israel Forum, together with the Confederation of Indian Industry and Ananta Aspen. We are very proud of our ties with Indian universities and have been blessed with the incredible students that have come from India to study at TAU. At this difficult time, we feel it is imperative to do all we can to assist the people of India.

Donations to support IsraAID’s response in India can be made through the IsraAID Emergency Response Fund.