Thursday, July 25, 2024

PAHO/WHO donates Video Laryngoscope to the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital Authority (KHMHA) to strengthen the response for patients suffering from COVID-19


To strengthen the clinical management response, specifically for the care of persons with severe COVID-19 and needing intubation, the Pan American Health Organization/World Health Organization (PAHO/WHO) donated a video laryngoscope to the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital Authority (KHMHA).

The video laryngoscope is a device that uses a camera to allow the healthcare worker to see the airway for safe and successful tracheal intubation especially where time to secure the airway of a patient is critical. This donation of the video laryngoscope presents advantages for both the patient and the healthcare worker. The device will ease any intubation difficulties by increasing success in first attempt intubation, reducing applied force, and lowering the need for external laryngeal manipulation.

“Current evidence has supported the use of video laryngoscopes as a rescue device when difficult intubation is encountered and direct laryngoscopy has been unsuccessful,” said PAHO/WHO Non-Communicable Diseases Technical Advisor, Dr. Jorge Polanco. “KHMHA being the main intensive care center for patients infected with COVID-19 will improve its quality care management of patients with the video laryngoscope.”

Apart from improving the success rate of intubation, for the safety of healthcare workers, the video laryngoscope increases the distance between the healthcare worker and the patient’s mouth. Especially during the times of a pandemic, the use of the video laryngoscope can reduce the risk of transmission of infectious diseases including COVID-19.

“Indeed, this video laryngoscope will be very much appreciated by our clinicians because they have asked for this to assist them in their day to day management of persons with COVID-19,” said KHMHA Chief Executive Officer, Ms. Michelle Hoare. “Patients with severe COVID-19, demanding critical care, most of the time need to be intubated and this device will facilitate their work, contribute to safer intubation, and reduce the risk of exposure to health personnel. I appreciate all the collaborative effort from PAHO/WHO towards KHMHA.”

Dr. Jorge Polanco handed over the essential and crucial device to the CEO, Ms. Michelle Hoare, who gratefully accepted the donation on behalf of the KHMHA and the Ministry of Health and Wellness. As Belize carries on the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic, PAHO/WHO Belize continues to work with the partners, ministries, and the country in providing technical guidance and procuring essential equipment needed to support the country’s COVID-19 response.


The Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) works with the countries of the Americas to improve the health and quality of life of its population. Founded in 1902, it is the world’s oldest international public health agency. It serves as the Regional Office of WHO for the Americas and is the specialized health agency of the Inter-American system. For further information, please contact Pete Castillo, PAHO/WHO IT/Communications at [email protected] or Zenena Moguel, PAHO/WHO Communications Consultant at [email protected] or visit  

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