The ELMA Relief Foundation (‘ELMA’) has paid US $1,100,000 to the Cayman Islands Government as full reimbursement for the cost of 50,000 PCR tests surplus to its needs.
ELMA has donated these test kits to the Clinton Health Access Initiative (“CHAI”) for use in Zimbabwe, which is one of the most resource-constrained countries in Africa facing an urgent shortage of such test kits as the COVID-19 pandemic spreads.
The operation to move the kits from frozen storage in George Town to Southern Africa was coordinated by ELMA, the HSA and the Governor’s Office. The Cayman Islands Government originally sourced 200,000 kits at the beginning of the pandemic to ensure that Cayman had the ability to test large numbers and became one of the top three countries in the world for COVID testing per capita. The kits provided under the arrangement with ELMA leaves Cayman with sufficient supplies going forward.
Governor Martyn Roper said: “I am very grateful to the ELMA Relief Foundation for organizing this initiative. We purchased an excess of COVID tests to ensure Cayman’s resilience at a crucial point in the pandemic. Our options in terms of testing have now expanded and it is great that our surplus kits will be going to assist with COVID response in Africa”.
Premier Alden McLaughlin commented: “I am delighted that these vital supplies will be going to support vulnerable communities in Africa and that Cayman was able to play a part in that as well as supporting other Caribbean countries. Our stocks of COVID testing supplies remain robust and we continue to look at innovative solutions to help us navigate through this crisis”