The German government has donated 12 ventilators worth € 350,000 to Bosnia and Herzegovina for COVID-19 patients which were delivered to representatives of BiH health authorities on Tuesday.
German Ambassador Margret Uebber handed over the Draeger ventilators to Vlado Miovcic of the Bosnian Serb entity's Public Health Institute and Goran Cerkez, assistant health minister in the Bosniak-Croat shared Federation entity.
One ventilator was immediately sent to the Fra Mato Nikolic Hospital in Nova Bila, while the rest will be sent during the week to hospitals in Sarajevo, Banja Luka, Mostar, Zenica and Tuzla.
The ambassador said Germany too was faced with big challenges in the fight against the coronavirus pandemic but that it decided to show solidarity, aware of how much any assistance is important to BiH, whose health system is also under great strain.
Since March, BiH has reported over 52,000 coronavirus cases and over 1,200 deaths related to COVID-19. Hospitals treating COVID patients are short of the necessary capacity as the infection has been spreading rapidly these past two weeks.
Six months ago, the Federation government bought 100 ventilators from China but they remain in storage as a search for an authorized maintenance company has been unsuccessful. When one company willing to put them into operation came forward, it turned out that all the ventilators tested were faulty.