Motorbikes for over hundred PHIs | Daily News

Motorbikes for over hundred PHIs

President Gotabaya Rajapaksa presided over the distribution of over 100 bikes among the PHIs yesterday at the Presidential Secretariat. Health Minister Pavithra Wanniarachchi and other ministry officials were also present.Picture courtesy President's Media Division
President Gotabaya Rajapaksa presided over the distribution of over 100 bikes among the PHIs yesterday at the Presidential Secretariat. Health Minister Pavithra Wanniarachchi and other ministry officials were also present.Picture courtesy President's Media Division

The Government gave motorbikes to over one hundred Public Health Inspectors (PHIs) under Health Ministry’s Sri Lanka COVID-19 Emergency Response and Health Systems Preparedness Project, yesterday.

Another 749 PHIs are to receive the motorbikes on priority basis, Health Ministry sources told the Daily News. The bikes, each of which will cost around Rs.300,000, will be distributed to the other PHIs under the project, Health Ministry sources said.

The Health Ministry is distributing these motorbikes to strengthen the coordination and timeliness of national and regional response in emergencies of pandemic nature under a long-term health systems strengthening project, according to Ministry sources.

The ministry carries out the project with a soft loan extended by the World Bank.

President Gotabaya Rajapaksa presided over the distribution of 107 bikes among the PHIs yesterday at the Presidential Secretariat. He was accompanied by Health Minister Pavithra Wanniarachchi and other ministry officials.

The bikes were distributed free of charge among the PHIs. According to sources this was the first time that the bikes were issued without obtaining any money from the PHIs. The bikes were given among these PHIs in recognition of their excellence in carrying out their duties to prevent the spread of COVID19 virus, said Sri Lanka COVID 19 Emergency Response and Health Systems Preparedness Project Director Jayasundara Bandara.

There are many plans on track to invigorate the health service to face future contingencies including infectious diseases such as COVID-19, including construction of an isolation centre within the National Institute of Infectious Diseases premises , which will have facilities such as negative pressure rooms, Intensive Care Units (ICUs) and separate waste disposal and drainage systems, according to Bandara.