Sixteen portable patient monitors were on Friday handed to Rwanda Biomedical Centre (RBC) in a bid to strengthen the country’s efforts of fighting against the Covid-19 disease. The donation, worth $50,000 is a courtesy of the Eastern and Southern African Trade and Development Bank (TDB) as part of its contribution to the Rwanda Ministry of Health to combat the pandemic. The devices, locally produced by Sana Medical Stores Ltd, will serve to monitor vital signs of Covid-19-affected adults and paediatric patients in different treatment facilities. They were handed over to RBC on Friday, October 9 at Rwanda Medical Supply Warehouse in Kacyiru, Kigali. “This contribution will improve the optimum standard of care that is being provided to patients with Covid-19 in treatment centers,” Dr. Innocent Turate, head of HIV and disease prevention control department at RBC. “This is a sign of complete partnership with the private sector.” TDB is a continental financial institution with 40 sovereign and institutional shareholders, including the Rwanda Social Security Board (RSSB) which owns 5 percent. As a reaction to the disease outbreak, the bank initiated an emergency response programme under which the donation was made. Commending the nation’s response to the pandemic, Regis Rugemanshuro, RSSB Director-General and shareholder representative on the TDB board noted that continued effort is important. “While Rwanda has been fairing very well in the fight against the Covid-19 pandemic, with strong prevention and mitigation measures in place, as well as high number of tests proportionally, it is important to keep boosting the country’s capacity, particularly in terms of equipment, so that its health care system continues to deliver in a context of increased demand,” he said. According to Turate, the new machines add to existing 22 which assist medics to monitor critical patients under treatment in intensive care unit and high dependency unit. He noted, however, that the number of patients with severe cases is “not alarming.” Speaking at the hand over, Admassu Tadesse, the TDB president and Chief Executive said they were pleased to accompany the Government of Rwanda in its efforts to mitigate the impact of Covid-19. “This is part of our broad response plan which, in addition to direct assistance as such via our Covid-19 Emergency Response Programme (CERP), also incorporates a series of financing interventions for financial institutions, sovereigns and enterprises, to help them cope with the shocks of the pandemic,” said Tadesse. Dr. Sabin Nsanzimana, RBC Director General appreciated the support, adding that it “comes in handy” as a great contribution to the fight against coronavirus.