Financial giant MasterCard pledged $ 10 million as a direct commitment to addresses the worsening COVID situation in India. Uncontrolled spread of COVID-19 has resulted in a spike in cases across the country with over 3,50,000 new cases reported each day.
India’s healthcare system has been stretched to the limit and is nearing its breaking point. Given the dire circumstances, MasterCard has initiated philanthropic efforts through its MasterCard Impact Fund. It has directed its efforts into three main areas – access to hospital resources, access to additional oxygen and medical supplies and the continued support of its employees across the country.
A major portion of the pledged amount will go towards the establishment of an additional 2,000 beds by setting up portable hospitals. This will help alleviate the pressure on the already strained healthcare infrastructure by addressing immediate medical emergencies.
Through coordination with the government and other organizations, the proposed portable hospitals could provide an estimated 2.5 million Indians with ready access to healthcare facilities.
Ajay Banga, Executive Chairman of MasterCard, lamented that the present situation in India was heart breaking and the grim state of affairs had affected everyone. “We have long been advocates for the people of India, as employers and as enablers of the economy. Now it’s time for us to put our shoulders to the wheel and do whatever we can to help all of India get through this intensified crisis,” he added.
Furthermore, as part of a broader corporate effort, MasterCard will also fund the shipment of an additional 1,000 oxygen generators. The company is also extending support to local charities and NGOs that are helping the affected, including the frontline workers.
MasterCard will also cover vaccination charges for all its India-based employees and their immediate families. It will also donate to its Employee Assistance Fund to assist its global workforce in helping one another.
“We’re hearing from our own teams the challenges that they and their families are facing. It’s critical that we stand by our friends and help those who have been impacted. Our commitment today and into the future is strong and enduring,” said Richard Verma, General Counsel at MasterCard and former US Ambassador to India.