We Are Committed to COVID-19 Relief Initiative
The Great Orchestra of Christmas Charity is fully committed to COVID-19 relief initiative. The biggest Polish charity allocated over PLN 24 000 000 (over EUR 5 500 000) for purchases of PPE, medical equipment and satisfying needs of key hospitals on the frontline of the fight with the pandemic in Poland.
The Great Orchestra of Christmas Charity Foundation uses its resources and expertise to aid the Polish healthcare system in the fight with coronavirus. The charity reached out to the Ministry of Health to offer support and find out which hospitals were chosen to be regional centres for treating patients, who test positive for COVID-19.
First contracts for the purchase of 150 beds for intensive care units were drafted at the end of March, and by April 9th the equipment should be delivered to 19 hospitals across the country. List of hospitals which will receive this additional equipment from our charity was drafted with the Ministry of Health. ICU beds provide patients with comfort, support, and allow medical professionals access to the patients.
Medical ventilators are indeed essential for treating COVID-19 cases, but these devices cannot be bought off the cuff, they are not in stock at all times. In the previous years, when we purchased ventilators for paediatric hospitals, the process took us a couple of months, and now, when the entire world is after these devices, it might take even longer. Yesterday we ordered 150 ICU beds for almost PLN 4 000 000 (EUR 877 600).
-Jurek Owsiak, chairman of the GOCC Foundation
The medical department of the Foundation, which relies on the long-running cooperation with the manufacturers of medical equipment, ordered 50 000 sets of personal protection equipment, which became of the most sought-after and vital commodities in the fight against coronavirus pandemic in the world. The PPE purchased by the Great Orchestra of Christmas for over PLN 16 000 000 (over EUR 3 000 000) consists of coveralls with boots, protective goggles, P3 mask with valve and mechanic filter (approved to be used in the medical environment when treating viral diseases), protective gloves, and bag for medical waste. The biggest challenge is bringing the supplies to Poland, and the charity has been working with both the Ministry of Defence and private transport companies to transport the protective equipment from China. The PPE sets are vital when it comes to ensuring health and safety of frontline medical staff and shortage of this type of gear has been one of the worst issues healthcare systems all over Europe has been forced to deal with as the pandemic spreads across the world.
The charity has also bought a lab analyser for ONCOLAB in Łódź. The device can be used to process coronavirus tests, making ONCOLAB laboratory more efficient in issuing a diagnosis and adding another centre where samples can be tested.
As soon as the Polish health care system launched its response to the COVID-19 pandemic, we reached out to medical equipment dealerships and manufacturers to help public hospitals prepare for the epidemic. Securing protective gear was not easy, as worldwide demand for PPE sets is overwhelming, but as we are a well-respected customer, we were able to negotiate the necessary purchases. First of all, we arranged to buy 150 ICU beds; then, we decided to supply ONCOLAB laboratory with COVID-19 testing device, and eventually, we were able to buy 50 thousand personal protection gear sets for our frontline medical workers. It is not our last purchase in our COVID-19 relief initiative, and to support our efforts we launched a COVID-19 Relief Fund.
-Lidia Niedźwiedzka-Owsiak, medical affairs director at the GOCC, member of the board
COVID-19 Relief Fund, which was initially open for corporate donations from our business partners and commercial entities, now accepts contributions from the members of the public, who want to support our efforts to help medical professionals combat the rising epidemic in the country. Money donated by our corporate partners allowed the charity to buy 157 cardiac monitors, which will be used at the hospitals tasked with treating COVID-19 patients. The charity aims to buy an additional 50 thousand protective masks, however, the biggest challenge is posed by transport limitations.