Whiteley, an Australian manufacturer of infection prevention products including a range of surface disinfectants and hand sanitisers, is calling on government and businesses to provide more support in the fight against COVID-19 to Australia’s Pacific partners.
Whiteley has donated more than $350,000 of infection prevention products including V-Wipes, Surfex and Viraclean to Australia’s neighbouring Pacific nations since the pandemic started.
“COVID is having a significant social and economic impact within our neighbouring nations. In Papua New Guinea for instance, infection rates are soaring and the products they need to prevent infection are in very short supply,” said Dr Greg Whiteley, executive chairman at Whiteley.
“Our company first engaged with Papua New Guinea in the early days of independence, and we have continued to supply products and educational support into the Papua New Guinea health care system over the many decades.”
Darran Leyden, managing director of Whiteley, said more needs to be done to support our neighbours, with Whiteley urging Australian businesses to join the fight against COVID-19 in the Pacific Region.
“We would also like to see government support, specifically enabling initiatives such as freight cost relief for donated products to enable businesses like ours to further increase the scale of our donation program’’.
Tracking data highlights that Papua New Guinea has administered 290,000 doses of COVID-19 vaccine to date. This equates to a vaccination rate of 1.7 per cent of their population, based on 2 doses*.
“With Australia’s vaccination rate now over 80 per cent, and places like NSW over 90 per cent it is easy to forget our neighbours and the struggles they are facing everyday trying to keep their people safe,” said Leyden.
“In PNG there have been more than 32,000 infections and 430 reported coronavirus-related deaths since the pandemic began but we know the problem is on a much broader scale due to many infections and related deaths going unreported in developing Nations.’
“As a company, we remain fully committed to supporting our many friends and colleagues in our region, as any good neighbour should be doing,” said Dr Whiteley.
*Source: Our World in data
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