Anglesey-based Virustatic Shield Ltd has donated 500,000 of its face coverings to India to help its struggle to contain the coronavirus pandemic.
A devastating second wave of coronavirus has hit India, leaving millions affected and the death toll now surpassing 300,000. The country’s crisis is seemingly continuing to worsen and hospitals continue to report critical shortages of oxygen and beds, the entire population is struggling to access basic necessities, including food and medical supplies.
Virustatic Shield is a face covering product of Virustatic Shield Ltd, which unites a global team of scientific partners and facilities to help combat a real and growing threat from the spread of infections. Its trusted 360-snood style face covering is a result of over a decade of UK research and was developed specifically to respond to the face covering requirements of a respiratory pandemic – SARS Cov-2, H1N1 (influenza).
Over the last 12 months, the company has been committed to product donations, giving over 25,000 of its face covering to front line workers, charities, and other causes. It’s now donated half a million of its Shields as part of the UK Covid assistance mission.
Professor Paul Stanton, the former NHS Director of Board Development and a Senior Consultant to Virustatic Ltd said: “The team here were very much aware that the situation in India had reached an unimaginable level of crisis and help was desperately needed.
“We wanted to respond with compassion and with practical assistance. Within 14 days of the team starting work, half a million protective face coverings were being distributed across Maharashtra. This was only possible because of the rapid development of high-level international connections and collaborative trans-sectoral networks and with the benefit of massive good will and enthusiasm from every one of the hundreds of staff concerned.
The swift donation was achieved through a rapid collaboration between the Virustatic Shield Ltd team, the Deputy High Commissioner and his staff team at the UK High Commission in Mumbai, together with Senior Ministers in the Maharashtra Government and staff in their Health Services and Home Departments.
67 pallets of the 500,000 face coverings weighing nearly 20,000 kg were transported 4,500 milesthanks to efforts of the UK Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) and its sub-contractors, the Government of India, the Indian Red Cross and through the generosity of Qatar Airways.
Paul concluded: “We know that the 500,000 face coverings have been allocated by the Maharashtra Ministry of Health across a region that is two and a half times the size of England to front line staff not only in health care provision, but in public health, education and to policemen and key utility workers in Mumbai, Pune, Kolhapur, Aurangabad, Nagpur and other sub-regional administrative districts.
“I’d like personally, as well as on behalf of Virustatic Shield Ltd, to thank everyone involved. It shows that, when people work together, extraordinary outcomes can be achieved”.