A decision has been taken to allocate the remaining balance of the COVID–19 (ITUKAMA) Healthcare and Social Security Fund to the COVID-19 vaccination drive.
Accordingly, a total of Rs 1,360,922,969.24 will be allocated for the vaccination process, the President’s Media Division (PMD) stated.
Reportedly, the total amount credited to the Fund was Rs. 1,752,402,793.24, out of which Rs. 391,479,824.00 had been utilized so far. The spent amount is 23% of the total amount of funds received, PMD said.
The remaining balance of the Fund is a quite small amount compared to the amount the government is expected to spend on vaccinations, PMD stated. However, the Management Board of the Fund has pointed out the importance of using the Fund’s balance for vaccination.
As per the PMD, the expenditures of the Fund are as follows:
Expenditure incurred to control the epidemic:
• PCR test-related expenses – 42,605,812.00
• For awareness campaigns – 67,543,967.00
• Expenditure on quarantine centers and related procedures – 38,031,065.00
• Administrative expenditures – 3,000.00
Amount to be paid:
• Vaccination related expenses – 41,545,980.00
• For the purchase of 10 ambulances – 194,000,000.00
• To purchase ICU beds – 7,750,000.00
The total amount paid and due: Rs. 391,479,824.00
All these expenditures had been borne by the Ministry of Health and the Army Headquarters.
The public, several local institutions as well as Sri Lankan expatriates made donations to the ‘ITUKAMA’ COVID–19 Fund. International financial institutions or organizations have not contributed to the COVID–19 Fund.
According to international laws, foreign aid and donations are made to the Treasury. There is no connection between this Fund and donations from international organizations. Even though the COVID–19 Fund received more public donations in 2020, the average monthly donation received up to April 2021 is around Rs 7 million.
The Fund’s Board of Management says that some information circulated through various media platforms in this regard is false and that the accounts of the Fund for the year 2020 have been handed over to the National Audit Office to conduct an audit.