Despite the testing times brought on by the COVID-19 Novel Corona Virus Pandemic and the issues along the border with our neighbours China, Pakistan and Nepal, India has been getting some steady support from a number of its loyal allies! In the early stages of this Pandemic, India was one of the world leaders in supplying essential medicines as well as in making travel arrangements for stranded foreigners to return to their native places while at the same time, arranging for Indians stranded abroad to return home! All this help improved India's standing among a lot of other countries in the world and it looks like that is showing now!

It has come to light teams of scientists from India and the United States would be jointly working to identify out-of-the-box treatments for COVID-19! A statement from the Department of Science and Technology (DST) said that eleven teams of scientists from India and the US would be looking at various COVID-19 treatment options ranging from ventilator research, antiviral therapy, novel early diagnostic tests and also sensor-based symptoms tracking. The selected teams of scientists would be undertaking these initiatives under the very rigorous bi-national review process of proposals received under the COVID-19 Ignition Grants in April 2020, issued by the USISTEF, as given in the DST's statement!

The US-India Science and Technology Endowment Fund (USISTEF) has been established jointly by the DST in India and the Department of State in the United States of America. The USISTEF has announced awards to eleven bilateral teams proposing innovative, out-of-the-box ideas to handle the COVID-19 challenge, being faced by the world! This USISTEF was established to promote joint activities for entrepreneurship and innovation in the fields of science and technology! The statement released by the DST read, "As countries battle the COVID-19 pandemic, innovations in science, engineering, and technology will play a critical role in finding solutions to the global challenge through the development of new vaccines, devices, diagnostic tools, and information systems, as well as strategies to help communities and nations manage and deploy resources to combat this pandemic!"