LOOK: This is what Gift of the Givers have done so far in fighting Covid-19

By Jolene Marriah-Maharaj Time of article published May 12, 2020

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Durban - In the midst of the Covid-19 pandemic relief organisation Gift of the Givers have kept their heads down and been hard at work. 

Director Imtiaz Sooliman, said the organisation's  primary focus has been the protection of front line health care workers and health workers in general. 

"In addition to the procurement of one million masks, we have on order or in stock, coveralls, hazmat suits, reusable and disposable surgical gowns, scrub suits, latex gloves, head covers, shoe covers, goggles, visors, thermal scans and sanitiser."

Sooliman said t hus far they had distributed protective supplies to 150 hospitals and clinics nationwide with many more to follow. 

Here are the list of relief they have offered thus far: 

- Fifteen video laryngoscopes for ICU's have been bought. The first five have been delivered to various hospitals national including Steve Biko, Tshwane General, Charlotte Maxeke, Rahima Moosa and Sebokeng Hospitals.

- They have distributed an intubox, a special protective box for intubation, designed by Prof Feroza Motara (a Gift of the Givers team member) and her team at Charlotte Maxeke Hospital. Distribution to both public and private sector hospitals is ongoing. 

- 25 triage tents have been set up at various hospitals to screen patients and reduce contamination. Many more requests have been received. Furniture has been provided for some of these tents. 
Chris Hani Baragwanath Hospital teams receiving PPE's and intubox for protective ventilation.

-A portable ultrasound machine, pulse oximeters, laryngoscopes and medicines for general use to support facilities have been provided.

- Nine Covid-19 testing sites have been set up, four additional sites will be functional next week. Thus far we have screened and tested 4000 patients. Gift of the Givers team members have been actively involved in the testing process. 
Dr Linda Mtshali from Inkosi Albert Luthuli Central Hospital in Durban receives 400 masks and 100 gloves from Gift of the Givers. Picture: Supplied

-Gift of the Givers has purchased five ILEX pcr test machines which will be set up in specially designated Covid-19 lab facilities to speed up the testing process. Each machine can produce 4 results in 45 minutes. Dedicated technicians will run these machines. Priority will be given for patients in ICU. We now have a huge interest from medical aid societies, corporate companies and provincial government departments requesting testing of their members and employees. SAPS has already partnered us and we have been testing their members nationally. 

-Gift of the Givers will be supporting the eThekwini Municipality homeless shelter by paying for registered nurses to attend to 2700 individuals. We will provide the relevant medication required.

- Water tankers deliver 530 000L of water per week in the Eastern Cape. In addition we have 400 fully functional boreholes drilled over an 18 month period which provide clean drinking water daily.

Director of Gift of the Givers Imtiaz Sooliman with team members Santoshi Harrichand and Dr Livan Menesis-Turino, at Northdale Hospital in Pietermaritzburg. Picture: Supplied

- Material masks as well as rolls of material have been donated to us. Various women groups have participated in sewing masks for us. These are being provided to the health department Covid-19 contact tracing teams to hand out to high risk individuals. 

- 40 000 maternity and child care packs to be distributed at clinics soon.

- A dedicated Covid-19 toll free line 0800786911 that provides information on testing and other related matters. 

- Counselling toll free line 0800786786 provides support on all counselling related matters. 

-Supporting SAPS has become an important consideration seeing that they are high risk with many of them having tested positive. Gift of the Givers has been supplying SAPS headquarters, and multiple divisions of the police services in various regions with protective supplies as well as food and water at checkpoints. 

Sooliman said food intervention is an absolute necessity. 

"The level of hunger is heart rendering. Currently we fund 100 feeding centres and have delivered 40 000 food parcels of our promised 100 000 to hungry families nationwide. We envisage a much greater intervention in these areas in the coming days."



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