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Foreign pharmas join efforts to tackle coronavirus

Novartis Korea donates 30,000 masks to low-income families in Korea (Novartis Korea)
Novartis Korea donates 30,000 masks to low-income families in Korea (Novartis Korea)
Foreign pharmaceutical companies operating in Korea are reaching out to those needing most help amid the coronavirus spread here.

Medical device company GE Healthcare Korea said Thursday it will donate ultrasound and patient monitoring equipment worth 210 million won ($174,000) to the doctors in North Gyeongsang Province, while Novartis Korea has donated 30,000 masks for low-income households.

GE Healthcare will donate GE Venue Go, an artificial intelligence-enabled ultrasound machine, and patient monitors B105 and B125, to help medical professionals make faster and more reliable diagnosis of coronavirus patients -- confirmed and suspected.


GE Venue Go is an artificial intelligence-enabled ultrasound diagnosis machine that reduces exam time by 80 percent compared to conventional machines (GE Healthcare)
GE Venue Go is an artificial intelligence-enabled ultrasound diagnosis machine that reduces exam time by 80 percent compared to conventional machines (GE Healthcare)


“As a committed member of the health care industry, we strongly feel the social responsibility to our community as the COVID-19 situation escalates. Through our donation, we hope to support medical professionals so that the current challenging situation comes to an end soon,” said GE Healthcare Korea President and CEO Khang Sung-wook.

The devices will be sent to Andong Medical Center in North Gyeongsang Province where over 135 confirmed patients are being quarantined.

GE Healthcare will also lend Voluson S8, an ultrasound imaging device designed for obstetricians and gynecologists, to examine the coronavirus confirmed and suspected pregnant women in Dong-san Hospital in Daegu.

If GE Healthcare has added ammunition for doctors on the frontier of the fight against COVID-19, Novartis Korea has focused on the least-protected low-income families.

Novartis Korea said it has given 30,000 masks to a local nonprofit organization called People for Share Hope to join in the effort to curb the spread of COVID-19.

PSH is a Ministry of Employment and Labor-approved NGO, which is carrying out various support programs to ensure the health and safety of the less-privileged, Novartis Korea said.

“It is deeply meaningful to be able to partake in Korea’s national efforts to resolve the COVID-19 situation,” said Novarts Korea CEO Joshi Venugopal.

“Our priority lies not only on the safety of our employees here but also on patients and medical professionals in Korea. To support them, we will actively join the efforts to limit the spread of coronavirus,” Venugopal said.

By Lim Jeong-yeo (kaylalim@heraldcorp.com)
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