PHILIPSBURG–Following a request from the government of St. Maarten and a rapid technical review by the World Bank, the Netherlands-financed St. Maarten Recovery, Reconstruction and Resilience Trust Fund has immediately approved an amount of US $3.6 million to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The support complements the assistance from the Netherlands’ Ministry of Public Health WVS.
The fast-track approval of the additional financing from the Trust Fund resources will allow St. Maarten Medical Center (SMMC) to immediately purchase necessary medical equipment, supplies and pharmaceuticals under the existing Hospital Resiliency and Preparedness Project. Pharmaceutical orders have been placed and SMMC, with support from the World Bank, is identifying suppliers for items in high demand due to the global pandemic.
The additional resources will help to increase SMMC’s current capacity to provide intensive care. Isolation units for severe cases, personal protective equipment and medical supplies will be put in place. The funds will also support efforts to install, equip and staff a treatment pavilion adjacent to SMMC that is provided by the Ministry of Public Health, Social Development and Labour VSA for COVID-19 triage and treatment.
Fast and flexible procedures under Trust Fund financing have allowed for the immediate availability of resources to help SMMC form a robust response to COVID-19, it was stated in a press release.
The Hospital Resiliency and Preparedness Project is financed by the St. Maarten Recovery, Reconstruction, and Resilience Trust Fund financed by the government of the Netherlands, managed by the World Bank, and implemented in collaboration with the government of St. Maarten by the National Recovery Program Bureau (NRPB).