Defence Force Supporting Samoan Measles Epidemic Response
2 December 2019
New Zealand Defence Force Supporting Samoan Measles Epidemic Response
The New Zealand Defence Force is providing logistics support to the New Zealand Government response to the Samoan measles epidemic.
On Friday, following an urgent request from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade (MFAT), a Royal New Zealand Air Force (RNZAF) C-130 Hercules aircraft took an oxygen generator, oxygen compressors, condensers and bottles to Samoa.
The aircraft and crew then flew to Nadi in Fiji to pick up 50,000 measles and rubella vaccines provided by UNICEF for the Samoan Government’s vaccination programme.
Today an RNZAF Boeing 757 transported to Samoa 2784 kilograms of medical stores, including hand sanitiser, chilly bins for vaccine transportation, vaccine fridges, power supplies for the fridges and 150 cartons of medical supplies.
Commander Joint Forces New Zealand Rear Admiral Jim Gilmour said the NZDF was prepared to do everything it could to support the Government’s response to the epidemic.
“We’re working closely with MFAT to provide assistance through aircraft and manpower where it’s needed,” Rear Admiral Gilmour said. “We’re glad we can do something to help our Pacific neighbours and our thoughts are with everyone affected.”