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Nov 10 2020

NATO delivers urgent supplies during second wave of COVID-19

MONS, Belgium – As NATO Allies and Partner nations deal with the second wave of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Alliance has ramped up efforts over the last several weeks to provide much needed assistance.

Throughout October and November, NATO Allies Albania, Czech Republic, Montenegro and North Macedonia have received numerous ventilators and medical supplies. The supplies were provided following requests for assistance through NATO’s Euro-Atlantic Disaster Response Coordination Centre (EADRCC).

We will further leverage our expertise, and our command and control capabilities to facilitate efforts in the fight against COVID-19

“The men and women of Allied Command Operations focus day in and day out on deterrence and defence of the Euro-Atlantic Area. We will further leverage our expertise, and our command and control capabilities to facilitate efforts in the fight against COVID-19, delivering results for NATO Allies,” said a NATO military spokesperson.

Albania and the Czech Republic both received 60 ventilators from the NATO stockpile for distribution to hospitals on Oct. 17 and Oct. 27 respectively. On Oct. 30 six pallets containing ventilators for North Macedonia and Montenegro as well as accessories for Albania, were transported from Brindisi Airport, Italy to North Macedonia by an Italian C27J Spartan aircraft. The air delivery mission was sponsored by Luxembourg and managed by the European Air Transport Command (EATC). Furthermore, on Nov. 4 health authorities in Montenegro received 20 ventilators. The ventilators were transferred to health authorities in Montenegro and are being distributed to local hospitals treating COVID-19 patients.

 Ventilators and other equipment were shipped from NATO stockpile on 30 October 2020, in response to requests for international assistance to NATO's Euro-Atlantic Disaster Response Coordination Centre (EADRCC) Photo by ITA MOD.

NATO has established a stockpile of medical equipment in order to be able to provide immediate relief to Allies or partners in need. The NATO Support and Procurement Agency (NSPA) is responsible for managing the purchase and storage of relief items for the stockpile. Numerous Allies, including Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Germany, Lithuania, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, North Macedonia, Norway, Romania, Slovakia, Turkey and the United Kingdom have contributed financial and in-kind donations of medical equipment and supplies to the Pandemic Response Trust Fund. This response also included lifesaving ventilators from the United States and Hungary and personal protective equipment from Germany.

There are several entities involved in the distribution of medical supplies to NATO Allies and Partners. EATC is a multinational command for air transport, air-to-air refuelling and aeromedical evacuation. The seven members (Belgium, France, Germany, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands and Spain) pool and share their air mobility assets with one common set of rules and regulations. Every member nation has at all moment access to the complete multinational fleet of approximately 170 aircraft.

The EADRCC is NATO’s principal civil emergency response mechanism in the Euro-Atlantic area. It is active all year round, operational on a 24/7 basis, and involves all NATO Allies and partner countries. The Centre functions as a clearing-house system for coordinating both requests and offers of assistance mainly in case of natural and man-made disasters.

Story by SHAPE Public Affairs Office

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