Covid-19 nurses
Nurses at the Aga Khan University Hospital Nairobi, attending to a COVID-19 patient on April 9th 2020. Image courtesy [Maudhui House]

In a patriotic initiative directly spearheaded by Equity’s boss Dr. James Mwangi, Equity Group Foundation and The MasterCard Foundation have pledged Ksh 1.1 Billion to reinforce the national war against the nightmarish COVID-19 crisis that is currently tampering with the very soul of this nation. 

The money will be used to provide Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) for the new heroes – the frontline medical staff dealing with COVID-19 patients in public hospitals in Kenya.

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Of the Ksh 1.1 billion, the MasterCard Foundation has pledged half a billion. On its part, Equity bank will pump in Ksh 300 million. The remaining balance will come from a personal donation of Ksh 300 million by Dr. James Mwangi and his family.

“We invited the CEO of the Kenya Medical Association and a group of doctors from KNH and University of Nairobi where we established the need for PPE’s for medical staff handling COVID-19 patients in the country”.

Equity Bank
Equity Group CEO Dr. James Mwangi.

“A team of seven was formed to help structure this initiative,” Dr. Mwangi says.

The team will now coordinate the implementation of the initiative to ensure availability of PPE’s across the country and will help to scale up a mental wellness support system for medical staff initiated by the Kenya Medical Association (KMA).

Equity Bank chairman Professor Isaac Macharia says that the lender understands the vital role of health care workers on the frontline.

Professor Macharia says that Equity bank is more than pleased to partner with universities and public hospitals to ensure the safety of healthcare workers who are risking everything to serve an oath of their profession.

“We must keep them safe,” says Reeta Roy, President and CEO of the MasterCard Foundation.

Until the virus is stopped dead on its tracks, Dr. Mwangi says that Kenyans must adhere to the guidelines provided by the Ministry of Health. This means social distancing, washing hands and sanitizing regularly, limitation of movement, self-quarantining when in doubt, and wearing face masks when in public.

“By observing these recommendations, we shall collectively as a community and society become the first line of defense to avoid paying the price of an exponential community spread of the pandemic”.

“We owe ourselves a duty of ensuring that we don’t add to the growing list of infected or contacts. Let us leave our medical staff and our health infrastructure to be our second line of defense for those who unfortunately become infected,” Dr. Mwangi said.

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