His Excellency Most Rev. Dr. Brian Udaigwe, the Apostolic Nunciature and the diplomatic mission of the Holy See (Vatican) to Sri Lanka handed over the medicines to Dr. Asela Gunawardena, Director General of Health Services at the Ministry of Health today on Friday, the 13th of January 2023 with the presence of directors and officers from the Catholic Church and the Ministry of Health.
While Sri Lanka is facing unprecedented economic crisis, the state hospitals are facing shortage of medicines all around the country. Observing the dire situation, Holy Father made this donation to purchase medicines. Caritas Sri Lanka, the social arm of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of Sri Lanka, coordinated the entire process with the Ministry Officials to identify an important medicine. Based on the current requirement, a medicine named “tacrolimus”, an essential medicine important in the treatment of kidney disease was identified. Later Caritas Sri Lank with the recommendation of the Ministry, purchased the medicines from an Indian Pharmaceutical Company directly.
The medicines will be distributed among the hospitals in Anuradhapura, Karapitiy, Vavuniya and another identified by the Ministry based on the seriousness and the need.
The donation was made in the presence of Rev. Fr. Luke Nelson, National Director, Caritas Sri Lanka (CSL) and Rev. Fr. Lawrence Ramanayake, Director of Caritas Colombo – Seth Sarana, Mr. Sajith Silva, Manager, Coordinator in Charge of Medical Support Project at CSL and Mr. Priyantha Fernando, Programme Manager, CSL. The Health Ministry Officials were comprised of Dr. G. Wijesuriya, Deputy Director General (Medical Services), Dr. Anver Hamdani, Coordinating In-Charge for Covid-19 and Health Care donor activities.