A message from PATH’s CEO about COVID-19

April 1, 2020 by Nikolaj Gilbert

Nikolaj Gilbert, PATH President and CEO (L), visits the DRC health emergency operations center in Kinshasa. February 27, 2020. Photo: PATH

Nikolaj Gilbert, PATH's president and CEO (left), visits the Democratic Republic of the Congo health emergency operations center in Kinshasa in February, 2020. Photo: PATH.

The following message was sent to PATH's supporters and partners.

Dear friends,

I joined PATH in early January, eager to broaden our impact. I didn’t anticipate that, within my few months on the job, we’d be facing a global pandemic.

But we don’t confront this crisis alone. At PATH, we are joining in solidarity with health care leaders all over the world to contain the outbreak. Our partners include the World Health Organization and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, both of whose guidance we follow closely.

Although COVID-19 presents an extraordinary challenge, it’s one that PATH is uniquely prepared to confront. Our teams have been hard at work for years, strengthening health systems under the Global Health Security Agenda and helping governments all over the world prepare for exactly this kind of outbreak.

Today, we’re actively working to control COVID-19 around the world. Our efforts include partnerships in:

  • Democratic Republic of the Congo: We are honored to house the Presidential COVID Task Force in our Kinshasa offices and work side by side with our government partners. We provide technical and logistical support as they develop a national response plan.
  • India: We’re joining with private industry to develop data analytics, logistical solutions, and rapid diagnostics.
  • Senegal: We’re supporting surveillance measures by utilizing and expanding existing systems originally developed to address Ebola and malaria.
  • Tanzania: We’re training health workers on WASH (water, sanitation, and hygiene) and other preventive measures. We also support the Ministry of Health to plan its response to the pandemic.
  • United States: Our health technology engineers are providing design and fabrication support to manufacture personal protective equipment for frontline health workers in Seattle.
  • Vietnam: We’re developing dashboards, mapping tools, case forms, and community-based surveillance systems that enable a targeted response.

Learn more about our COVID-19 efforts.

A screenshot of the COVID-19 online surveillance system that PATH is helping  to develop and deploy for the Ministry of Health in Vietnam. Photo: PATH.

A screenshot of the COVID-19 online surveillance system that PATH is helping to develop and deploy for the Ministry of Health in Vietnam. Photo: PATH.

If you’d like to support our teams’ efforts to help control COVID-19 and strengthen epidemic preparedness around the globe, please click here.

Taking heart in a global response

This is a difficult time for everyone. COVID-19 is disrupting lives and livelihoods, and the number of cases will likely continue to grow. At PATH, as in any community or organization, we’re feeling these stressors. But we’re also heartened by the global response. The virtual communities that have sprung up as people transition to remote work. The extensive and coordinated efforts to control COVID-19 in countries all over the world.

I hope that you, too, are encouraged by responses within your own communities—including the health workers who care for you and your loved ones, and the public health officials working to contain the outbreak. We must do all we can to slow the spread of COVID-19. Flattening the infection curve through mitigation efforts like physical distancing will help spare health systems, preserve resources, and save lives.

We encourage you to follow the guidance issued by WHO, CDC, and your local health department. As we forge partnerships to contain the pandemic, we will continue to do the same.

Thanks, and take good care,

Nikolaj Gilbert
President and CEO