Agency Provides Critical Supplies to USAID for India Pandemic Response

May 11, 2021 | Partner News

Airmen assigned to the 60th Aerial Port Squadron strap down cargo April 28, 2021, in the 60th APS Warehouse at Travis Air Force Base, California. The Defense Logistics Agency is providing rapid test kits, N95 masks and oxygen concentrators to the U.S. Agency for International Development in support of the effort. Air Force photo by SrA Jonathon Carnell, USAF.

Rapid COVID-19 test kits and N95 masks are among initial supplies from the Defense Logistics Agency being provided to India as part of the US government’s effort to help meet urgent health needs there.

Four shipments of supplies departed Travis Air Force Base, California, April 28 – May 1, and contained 1.6 million N95 masks, 1 million test kits, and 545 oxygen concentrators supplied by DLA. All of the supplies safely arrived in India, with the fourth flight landing today.

DLA was tasked to provide 15 million N95 masks, 1 million test kits, and 704 oxygen concentrators in support of the US Agency for International Development-led effort. On April 24, the Embassy of India in Washington requested assistance from the State Department for medical supplies and equipment.

“We remain closely integrated with the White House, National Security Council, the Joint Chiefs of Staff, and USAID to help clarify ways DLA can assist,” Dave Kless, the agency’s Executive Director of Operations, said.

DLA employees began coordinating interagency support to India immediately upon receiving the mission and worked during the weekend to outline commodities the agency could provide, current stock levels and locations, contracting options, and delivery timelines.

DLA troop support, which has provided over 3.5 billion in items ranging from ventilators to gowns and gloves to support the response, is also standing by to provide other supplies to India if directed. The agency has 14 field hospitals pending shipment to US Southern Command that could be redirected to India if requested, for example.

This is not DLA’s first COVID-19-related humanitarian support. DLA troop support is providing $1.3 million in pharmaceuticals to the Paraguay Ministry of Health for COVID-19 patients in intensive care, and DLA disposition services have provided excess property including beds for use in international quarantine facilities.

 

By Beth Reece

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