Johannesburg, South Africa – Aspen Pharmacare, Africa’s largest pharmaceutical company, has extended its support to Ukraine with donations of life-saving medicines required for urgent surgical intervention. This action further demonstrates Aspen’s ongoing commitment to saving lives and improving the quality of life of patients irrespective of their location or circumstances.
Stavros Nicolaou Aspen Senior Executive said, “We are in the business of saving lives and the impact of the ongoing humanitarian crisis in Ukraine cannot be ignored. Ukraine is desperate for critical care, surgical and life-saving interventions and as a leading global supplier of anaesthetics and other critical medicines, we are doing everything in our power to support this humanitarian effort. We have worked tirelessly with the Embassy of Ukraine in South Africa regarding logistics and transportation and we have arranged multiple donations of anaesthetics and other medications, the first of which have arrived in Ukraine from the United Kingdom. This shipment will ensure that 40 000 life-saving surgical interventions can take place to assist critically injured and maimed patients. A second shipment, which is being dispatched from Germany and is expected to arrive in Ukraine imminently, will provide medical supplies for an additional 22 000 surgeries. The total value of these donations is approximately R11 million (approximately US$740 000). The provision of further shipments of medical supplies is currently being assessed.
South Africa has also been impacted by the unfolding crisis. To this end Aspen has arranged for the safe repatriation of 25 South African students who were studying at universities in Ukraine and who were forced to flee the conflict to avoid becoming casualties of war themselves. Ten highly traumatised and emotional students were welcomed home by their families at OR Tambo International Airport on 10 March 2022 and the last two students are expected to arrive in the country within the week.
Ms Liubov Abravitova, Ukraine’s Ambassador to South Africa said, “The Russian/Ukrainian conflict has resulted in a significant humanitarian crisis, exacerbated by the bombing of critical infrastructure, which has left many citizens critically injured and without medicines, water and electricity. We are grateful for Aspen’s support and life-saving medicines which brings hope to the people of Ukraine. Many Ukrainian healthcare workers are fighting the war at the frontline, working under desperate circumstances to keep the healthcare system going and this donation of critical and life-saving medicines will assist these healthcare workers to save the lives of both injured civilians and those in the armed services.”