By Vatican News
Throughout the Covid-19 pandemic, Pope Francis has been showing his care for those on the margins and those who have the greatest need.
Over the past few months, the Holy Father has donated medical equipment to communities on the peripheries, a charitable outreach that is ongoing. On 17 August, the Vatican announced that 18 “Draeger” respirators and six “Fuji” ultrasound devices were being sent to healthcare facilities in Brazil. The humanitarian mission is being overseen by the Office of Papal Charities (Elemosineria Apostolica) and the Hope Onlus Association.
Solidarity with the less fortunate
Early last week, three respirators and one of the ultrasound machines arrived in the city Tocantinópolis in northern Brazilian. And on Thursday, four respirators and an ultrasound device were delivered to the São Lucas Hospital of the Pontifical Catholic University of Rio Grande do Sul (PUCRS) in Porto Alegre, in the southern Brazilian state of Rio Grande do Sul.
The machines were blessed by the Archbishop of Porto Alegre, Jaime Spengler, who praised the gesture as an expression “of the solidarity of men and women concerned for the life of the less fortunate.”
Caring for and promoting life
The equipment will be used in the intensive care unit, which is currently reserved solely for patients with Covid-19. The Rector of PUCRS, Brother Evilázio Teixeira, who was present at the reception of medical devices, said this act of solidarity “on the part of the Church is essential to strengthen our mission of the care and promotion of life.”
Brazil has been hard hit by the coronavirus. In Porto Alegre, a recent study suggests the “peak” of contagion has passed, but warned that it is necessary to maintain the downward trend. More than 115,000 cases of Covid-19 have been recorded in the state of Rio Grande do Sul, and more than three thousand people there have died from the disease.