The NOC*NSF has donated equipment set for use by its Olympic team ©NOC*NSF

The Dutch Olympic Committee*Dutch Sports Federation (NOC*NSF) has provided hospitals in the country with cooling vests and iced drink machines to help their battle against the coronavirus pandemic.

Around 25 machines and hundreds of cooling vests will be delivered to hospitals to assist medical staff, the NOC*NSF said.

The equipment had been bought by the NOC*NSF as part of its preparations for the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo.

It was purchased to help the Dutch team acclimatise to the expected high temperatures in the Japanese capital, but will now be spread across 10 hospitals in the Netherlands after the Olympics were postponed amid growing international concern over the COVID-19 outbreak.

Hundreds of vests will be delivered to hospitals across the Netherlands ©NOC*NSF
Hundreds of vests will be delivered to hospitals across the Netherlands ©NOC*NSF

"It is nice to see that it will not only come in handy at the Games, but can now also help in such an important place in society: the hospital," said NOC*NSF technical director Maurits Hendriks.

"This is a good example of how specific top sport know-how can be applied in a different place in society."

The Netherlands has reported more than 630 deaths and over 9,700 cases of the virus.

NOC*NSF officials said the vests and machines would be used by hospital staff, many of whom will be treating COVID-19 patients, during their breaks.

Maarten Moen, a doctor working for the NOC*NSF, said it was an "honour to help out the heroes of intensive care, who work under such extreme conditions."