The government is to donate 10,000 rapid COVID-19 antibody test kits to Honduras to help the Central American ally’s ongoing fight against the pandemic, a Ministry of Foreign Affairs official said yesterday.
The ministry is expected to dispatch the donation late yesterday or early today, Department of Latin American and Caribbean Affairs Director-General Alexander Yui said during a news briefing in Taipei.
The ministry is also to donate 10,000 COVID-19 test kits to two other Central American diplomatic allies, Guatemala and Belize, he said.
The test kits were developed by a local biomedical company.
The kits have a 90 percent accuracy rate and can deliver results in 10 minutes, Yui said.
After talks with the ministry, the company decided to provide the 20,000 test kits at no charge, to aid the nation’s allies, he said.
Yui made the remarks when asked to comment on news that Honduran President Juan Orlando Hernandez had been diagnosed with COVID-19 earlier this week.
The Honduran leader announced his diagnosis at a news event on Tuesday.
Hernandez said he has mild symptoms and is being treated with medication. His wife and two aides, who also have the virus, are also undergoing treatment.
Honduras, one of Taiwan’s 15 diplomatic allies, has reported more than 10,000 COVID-19 cases and 430 deaths as of yesterday.
Yui said that the ministry has been helping the country and other allies in Latin America and the Caribbean combat the virus by donating medical supplies, including masks, protective gear, test kits, infrared thermal imaging cameras and forehead thermometers, as well as quinine tablets.
Taiwanese health workers have also held videoconferences with their counterparts in these nations to share their experience and expertise in containing COVID-19, Yui said, adding that such efforts would continue.
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