On June 22, Vale delivered 80,000 COVID-19 rapid tests to the Mozambican Ministry of Health (MISAU). The donation ceremony took place at the premises of the Provincial Social Affairs Service, in the city of Matola, and was attended by Vale’s representative Welington Soares and the Secretary of State for Maputo Province Victória Diogo.
The delivery of supplies to the Mozambican authorities is part of the memorandum of understanding signed between Vale and the Mozambican Government, which provides a US$2 million aid to tackle COVID-19. Donation of hospital equipment, preventive supplies and personal protective items for health care professionals is under analysis. These 80,000 rapid tests donated to the Ministry of Health are part of the humanitarian aid package, which has been distributed in several provinces in the country since April.
Vale acknowledges its responsibility to provide support in such a challenging time and reaffirms its commitment to Mozambican society. Vale’s representative Welington Soares underlined the “company’s prompt mobilization to fight the disease at its onset by reinforcing control and prevention measures in all Vale units,” thus “protecting the lives of its workers and of communities.” Welington also recalled that, in addition to the 80,000 tests delivered today, “the US$ 2 million humanitarian aid provided by Vale to Mozambique includes donations of public hygiene supplies, hospital equipment, and PPE” to support health authorities in the fight against COVID-19.
Since the outbreak of pneumonia due to the new coronavirus, Vale is closely monitoring the evolution of the pandemic both in Mozambique and around the world and has proactively taken all preventive measures to ensure the safety of its employees and the communities surrounding its operations. The company has been implementing a series of measures to mitigate the effects of Covid-19 according to WHO recommendations, particularly the mass testing to quickly identify asymptomatic employees who have been exposed to the virus. By using the test to (screening) map out these people, we can isolate them and start providing medical assistance immediately.
Vale had been implementing several prevention and safety measures in Mozambique even before the first COVID-19 cases were reported in the country. Employees in administrative activities started working from home; in operations,Vale maintained minimum staff to ensure the essential activities are carried out safely. The company canceled all non-essential travel and reinforced all hygiene and safety procedures, putting workers over 60 and with chronic diseases on leave until the situation normalizes. Other measures included social distancing, expansion of the bus fleet to avoid crowds, and distancing rules for the canteens.
By following the WHO protocol and taking the appropriate measures, Vale is helping stem the spread of the new coronavirus in the regions where it operates, fulfilling its vision that life matters most