Thu | Nov 26, 2020

Health Ministry receives donation of a total of over 7,000 masks

Published:Tuesday | June 23, 2020 | 12:00 AM
Sharon Spence-Gibbs, General Manager of Singer Jamaica Limited, handing over masks to Dr Christopher Tufton, Minister of Health and Wellness, at the Ministry's offices in New Kingston on Tuesday, June 23, 2020 - Rudolph Brown photo
Teddy Zhou, (left) Deputy General Manager of Sinopharm, presents medical supplies from by China Sinopharm International to Dr Christopher Tufton, Minister of Health and Wellness, at the Ministry's offices in New Kingston on Tuesday, June 23, 2020 - Rudolph Brown photo
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The Ministry of Health and Wellness today received a total of over 7,000 facial masks to aid in the fight against COVID-19.

Singer Jamaica handed over 3,000 masks to the Ministry to promote mask-wearing and for distribution to various communities. 

This follows the donation of 1,250 masks to golden age homes and children's homes across the island by the company. 

Sharon Spence-Gibbs, general manager at Singer Jamaica, indicated that the company is aiming to donate 20 sewing machines to social programmes islandwide to aid in providing the less fortunate with the means to produce facial masks for protection against the COVID-19.

Spence-Gibbs said six machines have already been donated to churches in Ocho Rios and Kingston.

She said entities must be able to prove that the machines will be used to produce masks for free distribution to be eligible to benefit from the initiative.

“It is an initiative from Singer International, and you know we are located across the world; so what we are trying to do is to help institutions that are interested in making masks because they would like to donate masks to the cause.

“In some communities, persons can’t afford masks, and with the initiative they could probably partner with fabric companies. We think it is a great initiative. The idea is to ensure that everyone wears masks, so if they can’t afford it and you can get someone to make it for $100 and give it out into the community, then we are all winners,” Spence-Gibbs said. 

Minister of Health and Wellness Dr Christopher Tufton, who received the donation, shared that one of the positives of COVID-19 is that a number of companies have stepped up in helping to combat the virus.

“The idea of masking up is very important in terms of the spike, and too many Jamaicans are ignoring the message. Now, one of the things we have to determine is if they are ignoring the message because they can’t afford a mask or, perhaps worse, they don’t understand the importance of wearing a mask in these times. I think an opportunity like this, where we receive some masks courtesy of Singer, will give us a chance to donate more masks, but also to promote the message of masks wearing,” Tufton said. 

Meanwhile, China Sinopharm International today also handed over a number of personal protective equipment to the health ministry in a separate handing over. 

The company donated 4,000 surgical masks, 400 disposable medical masks, and 100 disposable medical gowns. 

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