MANILA, Philippines – The Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) has received about P57 million worth of medical equipment, supplies and personal protective equipment (PPE) from the Australian Government.
In a statement, the AFP said the donated items were turned over to the military in a ceremony held at Pier 15, South Harbor in Manila on Tuesday, September 28.
Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana and AFP chief of staff Lieutenant General Jose Faustino Jr. led the ceremony with Australian Ambassador to the Philippines Steven Robinson AO handing over the donation.
“Throughout this unpredictable COVID19 pandemic, I am very pleased that Australia is able to provide flexible and responsive support to the Philippines. These additional medical and personal protective equipment will be critical in VLMC’s COVID-19 testing efforts, and treatment of COVID patients,” Robinson said.
“The turnover of donations from the Australian Government is a clear testament of the collaborative partnership that both our respective nations and military forces continue to nurture and sustain, as we aspire to work together in promoting the welfare of our people and country,” Lt. Gen. Faustino said.
Lorenzana, for his part, conveyed the Defense Department’s gratitude and appreciation to the country’s long-standing strategic partner.
“The Australian Government has expanded the coverage of its Defense Cooperation Program to include the pandemic needs of Filipino Soldiers; a gesture that conveys the message that we are not alone in this fight,” he said.
“Certainly, these donations will ramp up the day-to-day clinical management and quality of care and service which AFP’s medical arm is expected to provide,” he added.
The AFP said the donated equipment and supplies will be turned over to the AFP’s primary military hospital, the Victoriano Luna Medical Center (VLMC) to support its COVID19 response, testing efforts and capacity for hospitalization of minor to critical patients.