The first batch of what will be 1,060,100 total doses of Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine – a donation from the people of the United States to the people of Cambodia arrived here this morning in Phnom Penh.
According to the U.S. Embassy in Phnom Penh’s press release, the remainder are expected to arrive Monday, Aug. 2. With this contribution, the United States reaffirms its longstanding commitment to the public health of the Cambodian people, one that has never been clearer than during the global pandemic.
These vaccines, which will protect fully more than one million Cambodians, are part of President Biden’s initial pledge to distribute 80 million vaccine doses globally. The Johnson & Johnson vaccine doses have been delivered to the Cambodian people through the COVAX global vaccine initiative, in partnership with UNICEF and the WHO.
“The best protection against COVID-19 is to be fully vaccinated,” said U.S. Ambassador W. Patrick Murphy. “We are proud to help Cambodia ensure the health of its citizens and keep its economic future bright with the donation of these vaccines, which adds to technical and material public health and economic assistance the United States has provided to the Kingdom throughout the pandemic.”
The United States has committed US$4 billion to COVAX, making it the single largest contributor to the international response to COVID-19. In Cambodia, the United States has provided more than US$11 million in supplemental assistance since the pandemic first broke out.
Through the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), U.S. support has reached more than ten million Cambodians with risk communication materials via television, social media, radio, SMS messaging, and billboards. The support has also improved laboratory capacity, strengthened healthcare workers’ skills, and helped to mitigate the economic impact of the pandemic for vulnerable populations.
Other U.S. agencies in Cambodia, including the U.S. Centres for Disease Control (CDC), National Institutes of Health (NIH), U.S. Navy, and U.S. Department of State, have provided critical technical assistance throughout the pandemic, supporting surveillance, contract tracing, capacity, and research to stem the spread of COVID-19.
These efforts build on decades of U.S. leadership and life-saving work in tackling global health crises. Since 1992, the United States has invested more than US$377 million in assistance in Cambodia to address infant and maternal mortality, malaria, tuberculosis, HIV/AIDS, and stunting, improve hygiene and nutrition, and strengthen Cambodia’s ability to finance and manage logistics and information for its health system.
Source: Agency Kampuchea Press